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Spiking neural networks based on resistive memory technologies for neural data analysis

Abstract : The central nervous system of humankind is an astonishing information processing system in terms of its capabilities, versatility, adaptability and low energy consumption. Its complex structure consists of billions of neurons interconnected by trillions of synapses forming specialized clusters. Recently, mimicking those paradigms has attracted a strongly growing interest, triggered by the need for advanced computing approaches to tackle challenges related to the generation of massive amounts of complex data in the Internet of Things (IoT) era. This has led to a new research field, known as cognitive computing or neuromorphic engineering, which relies on the so-called non-von-Neumann architectures (brain-inspired) in contrary to von-Neumann architectures (conventional computers). In this thesis, we explore the use of resistive memory technologies such as oxide vacancy based random access memory (OxRAM) and conductive bridge RAM (CBRAM) for the design of artificial synapses that are a basic building block for neuromorphic networks. Moreover, we develop an artificial spiking neural network (SNN) based on OxRAM synapses dedicated to the analysis of spiking data recorded from the human brain with the goal of using the output of the SNN in a brain-computer interface (BCI) for the treatment of neurological disorders. The impact of reliability issues characteristic to OxRAM on the system performance is studied in detail and potential ways to mitigate penalties related to single device uncertainties are demonstrated. Besides the already well-known spike-timing-dependent plasticity (STDP) implementation with OxRAM and CBRAM which constitutes a form of long term plasticity (LTP), OxRAM devices were also used to mimic short term plasticity (STP). The fundamentally different functionalities of LTP and STP are put in evidence.
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Thilo Werner. Spiking neural networks based on resistive memory technologies for neural data analysis. Human health and pathology. Université Grenoble Alpes, 2017. English. ⟨NNT : 2017GREAS028⟩. ⟨tel-01969946⟩

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