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DIY Muscle Sensor / EMG Circuit for a Microcontroller

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Measuring muscle activation via electric potential, referred to as electromyography (EMG) , has traditionally been used for medical research and diagnosis of neuromuscular disorders. However, with the advent of ever shrinking yet more powerful microcontrollers and integrated circuits, EMG circuits and sensors have found their way into prosthetics, robotics and other control systems. Yet, EMG systems remain expensive and mostly outside the grasp of modern hobbyist.

This instructable will teach you how to make your own muscle sensor / EMG circuit to incorporate into your next project. Use it to control video games, robot arms, exoskeletons, etc.

Click on the video below for a demonstrations on how to hook up and use your EMG circuit board!

You can now also purchase  EMG sensors, kits, cables and electrodes at www.AdvancerTechnologies.com!
Muscle Sensor Kit (now also on SparkFun)
Muscle Sensor Electrodes

Note: This sensor is not intended for use in the diagnosis of disease or other conditions, or in the cure, mitigation treatment, or prevention of disease, in a man or other animals.

About Advancer Technologies 
Advancer Technologies is a company devoted to developing innovative game-changing biomedical and biomechanical technologies and applied sciences. Additionally, Advancer Technologies promotes all forms of interest and learning into biomedical technologies. To help culture and educate future great minds and concepts in the field, they frequently post informative instructions on some of their technologies. For more information, please visit www.AdvancerTechnologies.com .

 
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RománV11 month ago

what programs and code for arduino you used for the data acquisition and the visual representation of the emg signals?, thanks for your time and for your project (:

Gundanium (author)  RománV11 month ago
Hi The sample code can be found on our website: http://www.advancertechnologies.com/p/muscle-sensor-v3.html

My project is about Headache measurement using EMG sensors. How could I get the EMG sensor electrodes that can collect the pulses in about 200mV.

husnalebiu9 days ago

hye Gundanium, my final year project is about wireless EMG for nominal switching controller. I want to control the on-off switching for lamp or bulb for 240V. from what I have proposed, my project concept is build an EMG circuit with a tranceiver and build one circuit with a transceiver as switch for my 240V bulb. The EMG circuit will be controlled the switch to on or off the bulb.So do I need isolation circuit in my EMG circuit? may you give me some idea about my proposed project.

Gundanium (author)  husnalebiu9 days ago
Yeah you will probably want isolation between the power source and the EMG circuit and between the EMG output and whatever connects to the bulb controller.
husnalebiu9 days ago

hye Gundanium, my final year project is about wireless EMG for nominal switching controller. I want to control the on-off switching for lamp or bulb for 240V. from what I have proposed, my project concept is build an EMG circuit with a tranceiver and build one circuit with a transceiver as switch for my 240V bulb. The EMG circuit will be controlled the switch to on or off the bulb.So do I need isolation circuit in my EMG circuit? may you give me some idea about my proposed project.

OppaC14 days ago

Hello! May I ask if I can also use this circuit for other applications, such as ECG?

Gundanium (author)  OppaC14 days ago
No. ECG waveform has a vastly different shape and requires different filtering. You could potentially use it as a crude heart rate sensor.
ReyhanS16 days ago

We used Arduino but we couldn't visualize it. Which program have you used for processing for Arduino? We used Firmata but we couldn't understand how to use both codes together. Can you please tell us how to make it step by step? Thanks for your consideration.

Gundanium (author)  ReyhanS16 days ago
Here's the Arduino and Processing code

https://github.com/AdvancerTechnologies/Muscle-Sensor-v3/tree/master/Example%20Code/BarGraph
Gundanium (author)  ReyhanS16 days ago
It's called Processing https://processing.org/

There's sample code on our product page: http://www.advancertechnologies.com/p/muscle-sensor-v3.html
ReyhanS1 month ago

How can you connect the circuit to computer and which program are you using for monitorizing output signals? Also can we get the signals from oscilloscope?

Gundanium (author)  ReyhanS1 month ago
The circuit outputs an analog signal so you need either an analog-to-digital converter or a microcontroller to convert it to a digital signal the computer can understand. I usually do with with an Arduino MCU. I'm using an Arduino sketch to send the sensor data over serial and Processing to take that data and visualize it. You can find the code on our website or on our GitHub repository.

As for an o-scope, the signal is analog so you can view it with an o-scope.

i couln't find INA106 can u suggest another IC instead of that?

i couln't find INA106 can u suggest another IC instead of that?

hai am bhavana, the project is very good , building our own EMG circuit for many applications, iam thinking to use this in my project, but my question is where can i get the software or program to be installed into arduino. please help in this regard
thank u
Gundanium (author)  chepuri bhavana1 month ago

http://www.advancertechnologies.com/p/muscle-sensor-v3.html

Gundanium (author)  chepuri bhavana1 month ago

It can be found on our website http://www.advancertechnologies.com/p/muscle-sensor-v3.html

Can u help me with connecting arduino to the computer and logging the data? Or share your code with me. My email id is abrahimshah99@gmail.com

Suchso2 months ago

Any alternate ic for ina106.

Gundanium (author)  Suchso1 month ago

I don't know of any that can simply swapped out. However, there are other ICs that are suitable for the first stage of the circuit. For instance, AD620 or the AD822* family of ICs (e.g. AD8226, AD8221). Our latest sensor uses the AD8226: http://www.advancertechnologies.com/p/muscle-sensor-v3.html

Can i use this sensor more than one time ?

Gundanium (author)  ahmed.yousif.96151 month ago

Yes. Why wouldn't you?

i am using proteus software and i do not have ina106 in my library .plz guide me what should i do. 2nd thing plz send me clear areas and schematic of DIY muscle sensor at zohaibshabir786@gmail.com

because it is not clear on website

Waiting for a kind response.

Regards

hi hello.. i want to use it for my fyp project this month.. can i know more detail about this project.. my email : bill_student46@yahoo.com . and may i now , can i get the signal by using labview software?

kkops3 months ago

can u suggest any reuseable EMG electrodes that will work with this circuit?

Gundanium (author)  kkops2 months ago
The conductive fabric tutorial on our website should work.
oscar2565 months ago

How much is the max amplification for biosignals it has the circuit? Reading a little, i see: G=110 for the INA106. G= -15 for the first opamp, G= -1 for the second opamp, and G=POT/1K for the last opamp. So the final gain is G=(1650)(POT/1K)??? is this correct?? And the max gain is G=165000????

Gundanium (author)  oscar2562 months ago
Right. The max gain isnt usually required
J_Aparecido6 months ago

Hello,

I managed to assemble this project is operating normally ... like a hint, how can I increase the sensitivity of the circuit? For example, if I want to monitor variations in electrical potential without even having muscle contractions, or in a state of relaxation or strees would be an example.

I tried to increase or decrease the gain resistor between pins 5 and 6, but to no avail, however lost sensitivity.

I'm starting in the area of electronics, if someone give some hint where I can find information on, I thank you.

And sorry, my english is not very good, I am "writing" with the help of a translator ...

Thank you,

Gundanium (author)  J_Aparecido2 months ago
Youd probably be best using the raw emg waveform rather than the envelope. Just use an instrumentation amplifier like the first stage of this circuit. Remove DC offset from its ouput with a high pass filter and then amplifier with as much gain as you need to get the sensitivity youre looking for.
AtlasGe10 months ago

dear Gundanium(it seems you are a gundam lover hummm?) i need your help!

i thought i've correctly drawn the .sch file(or at least made it looks like a right one)

also i've tried to turn it into a pcb design

but as i pressed the button 'PCB Quote', there is something wrong and I have nothing to do about it.

what is the signal layer and how to 'put' copper on it?

is it the right way i'm taking?

any kind help is apprecited!

thx

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Gundanium (author)  AtlasGe2 months ago
Id suggest contacting the software maker to help you troubleshoot your issues with their program
KalRob9 months ago

This is great, does anyone have the PDF file of this? I can't download it. Also, what areas would you change/ replace to make this better? Thank you!

Gundanium (author)  KalRob2 months ago
Our Muscle Sensor v3 uses an improved circuit. The schematic is on our website.
dhivya138 months ago

Hi can i ask if this circuit can be used with Matlab software to display results?

Gundanium (author)  dhivya132 months ago
Yes but youll need a DAQ or some other ADC such as a microcontroller.
rudiclan7 months ago

Hello, I have a problem with the circuit. Sometimes everything works fine and sometimes there is no signal. I used a scope to measure each step an figured out that I have a high DC offset after the first ampification step (AD620 with gain of arround 110). The DC offset is about 800 to 1500mV but I see a oscillation when I use the muscle. Now the signal gets amplified by a factor of 15 and the opamp saturates (constant 8,x V). After the ac couple with the capacitor the signal gets zero. Is it possible to reduce the DC offset or decouple the signal before the second amplification step? Thank you!

Gundanium (author)  rudiclan2 months ago
Check out the schematic for our latest muscle sensor. We improved the circuit to eliminate this problem. However, the still is the potential for DC offset because of the instrumentation amplifier input bias current which can polarize the electrodes. Our next generation sensor addresses this problem. Should be out next year.
thorshammer6 months ago

Hi, I was wondering if it was possible for me to replace the tantalum capacitors with ceramic ones

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