LED Helmet for Dementia, Alzheimers?




Introduction: LED Helmet for Dementia, Alzheimers?

Follow this instructable at your own risk.  This is not FDA or UL approved. This uses 1,512 red and near-infrared LEDs to shine light into the brain. UK researchers claims this relieves the symptoms of dementia and therefor possibly Alzheimer's and Parkinson's.  The effect of these wavelengths of light are well known so if it works it should not be a surprise: they penetrate up to 1 inch of soft tissue and up to 5 mm of living bone like the skull and then increase the energy production of cells by kick-starting the mitochondria's electron transport chain into utilizing more food-energy from the Krebs cycle to produce more ATP cellular energy. Specifically, the individual photons strike a copper and iron atom in the cytochrome-c-oxidase pump whose genes animals inherited from the light-activated ancestors of today's purple bacteria. In normal healthy cells this can be seen as an immediate increase in breathing rate when you lay in the Sun with a lot of exposed skin.  It happens immediately before there is any heat build up in the tissue.  Healthy cells probably benefit from it and at least increase your ability to work naked in daylight hours, but it has been proven many times in many experiments that helps speed healing of everything except skin injuries, helping as much as applying ice, but in a different way, by injured (compromised) cells produce the extra energy that they need especially after very recent injuries.  Skin injuries already seem to be optimized for healing so it does not help much in those cases, although sugar or honey placed directly on wounds speeds healing as well oxygenation (e.g. hyperbaric chamber) and if these two are used then the next hold-up in the healing rate might be how fast the sugars and oxygen are utilized which might be increased by the light, assuming the necessary nutrients, especially lysine and vitamin C for collagen connecting the cells, are present (the Vitamin C as sodium, calcium, or magnesium ascorbate, not the regular hydrogen ascorbate known as ascorbic acid).  Anyway, each of my 12 LED boards have 126 LEDs of the 5 mm "bullet" type, alternating 660 nm red (1.9 V) and 850 nm near-infrared (1.55 V).  These are the best wavelengths.  I used the largest protoboard from mpja.com for the circuit and bend the LED wires over to form my circuit.  The extra length of the LED wires are snipped off and used for the long lines seen in the photo. I do not use series resistors to limit the current in each series of 7 LEDs that are powered by 12 V (normal intensity) to 18 V (super intensity, overdriving my 30 mA LEDs up to 100 mA) and it seems to work out fine, so I advise against the usual series resistor that would take up space, cause more heat, and prevent over-driving of the LEDs.  Each board needs 12 to 18 VDC, so 4 boards are in series because the power supply output is 48 to 55 VDC.  The "intensity" knob just increases or decreases the voltage. It used a max of 5 Amps at 55 VDC, so it's 250 W, and the area of coverage is exactly 1,000 cm^2 which is 0.1 m^2.  If the LEDs are 30% efficient, that's 75 mW/cm^2.  A box fan on each side of the head is required when it is this powerful, and it is not possible to make it more powerful because the head will get too hot even with fans after a few minutes.  Sunlight strength in the range of the 4 "healing" or "energy producing" wavelengths is 29 mW/cm^2, but maybe only 15 mW/cm^2 at really good wavelengths, and sun only covers one side.  So my guesstimate in the video of 3 times the Sun (6 times at the high intensity) seems accurate, but it covers maybe 3 times more surface than the Sun, so at the high intensity this should be about 9 times more than the Sun, without UV problems.  If you want to know more about LED light for healing injuries see my website http://heelspurs.com/led.html

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    Question 2 years ago on Introduction

    Hi Zawy, I am trying to make a Max Burr type of hat .So i need an address for 850nm LEDS.
    The address given(aliexpress.com) at the bottom of your reply, below, does not seem to work any more ?
    So can you please help me with a new address for strips of LEDS ?
    Also what to order? (I guess i need about 5 m .of lights).
    I think your hat looks great !.What are you suffering from ? and has your hat worked???
    All the best


    2 years ago

    I love this idea. I have absolutely no experience, but am searching for materials now. I am going to use smaller boards just to have a softer shape, 6cm x 8cm. I am only using 1060 leds. My interest is anti-aging but I figure I can make a curved mask shape for facial skin treatment and it should alternatively fit comfortably over the head.
    Am I correct in thinking that 48 V DC can power 22 - 2.1 v LED's in series? So If I have 48 led's per board (22 boards), I need to divide them into circuits and separate them with a resistor?
    I also want to use 60 850nm led's scattered throughout (usually this frequency is not used for anti-aging) however they are a different amperage than the 660 nm. (60 as opposed to 20)
    I found a couple of calculators online that give me different array set ups, though unfortunately none of them (so far) allow me to insert a combination of different LED specs. I'll have to study a bit on how to figure that out I guess.
    Thanks so much for this idea. When I complete my facial mask, I'll send you the specs/pictures. (I'm crossing my fingers, I'll get it right)


    5 years ago

    Hello Zawy!! how is it being going for you? do you still use the LED helmet? seen any long term positive effects? Thanks,


    5 years ago

    be very carefull u should wear an ir eye protection with so much led directed to ur eyes


    8 years ago on Introduction

    This describes a different design that does not require soldering all the LEDs.

    First of all, follow my ideas, advice, and recommendations at your and your loved one's own risk. There may be eye damage from exposure to the LED arrays, and there is a shock risk to my methods (120 VAC and 48 VDC), and prolonged exposure to the head may harm the brain via excess oxidation and other unknwon effects. 7 minutes 2 or 3 times a day is my best guess as the ideal for no hair and light skin. The time needed can vary a lot (10x or 20x) based on hair and skin darkness.

    If you can figure out how to structure a helmet with the arrays below, I want to see pictures of your finished product and I'll post the pictures to my page. It has 48 LEDs per circular board, 850 nm, 12 VDC required to power the boards, and the middle hole is not as big as others. These "security camera illuminator" arrays usually have a "CDS" light sensor to turn off. You can cover them up to block light, or cut one of their leads or simply remove them by desoldering to de-activate them. You'll need 28 of them for 1300 LEDs for the whole brain area, so $200 is their cost. I wire them 4 in series so that a 48 VDC supply at 3 or 4 amp (or more) from ebay or amazon ($34, see link) can be used. 4 boards in "series wiring" makes a "set", then you would wire each "set" in parallel. It gets confusing and hard to follow the wiring, and you burn up 1 to 3 boards if you make a mistake. A 12 VDC supply (link below) does not have this problem but requires 15 amps with simpler wiring (all in parallel). 15 amps is a lot so use high gauge (14) wire from the power supply to boards and between boards. 36 VDC powering sets of 3 boards is also a possibility. Importantly, the power supply needs to have a voltage adjustment (a small knob on circuit, exposed, and hard to see) to maximimize light output at highest tolerable and safe heat. But this also means the type of power supply you can find as I've linked below will have exposed 120 VAC connections, a serious shock hazard to dementia and Alzheimer's patients. You'll have to use something like a cut old lamp cord to power it.

    48 LED circuit 850 nm $6.50 each (also on ebay...get boards with small holes)

    48 VDC 10% adjustable VDC, 7 amp power supply $34:

    12 VDC 10% adjustable VDC, 20 amp $26