After a decade of experience as the pioneers of home-use pulsed brain photobiomodulation technology, we learned that effective brain photobiomodulation is not simple. Delivering the optimal amount of light energy into the brain in a safe and effective manner takes considerable research and engineering.

Here are the reasons behind the Neuro’s unique patented design.

Optimizing NIR Energy Delivery into the Brain

As a research-centric company, we discovered there are important physics and biological elements which factor into achieving optimal penetration and beneficial responses in the brain.

Figure: The inverse square law of light

Minimizing distance of LEDs from the scalp.

Light energy gets weaker as it travels over distances due to the inverse square law for radiation intensity.

As light spreads out from a light source, it becomes less intense in rapidly larger proportions.

Zero distance between LEDs and the scalp is optimal.

Figure: Penetration of 810nm energy through a human cadaver with the Vielight Neuro 3.

Image source: Uniformed Services University.

Sufficient surface radiant power density.

Surface radiant power density is defined as the amount of light energy landed on a surface.

Sufficient surface radiant power density is required for NIR light energy to penetrate the skin and skull.

An optimal amount of surface radiant power density is one of the most important metrics for effective brain photobiomodulation.

Video source: Infrared camera capture of Vielight Neuro Alpha footprint and intensity.

Bypassing hair, a strong barrier.

Without LED lens technology that maximizes contact and focus on the scalp, light energy photons will get trapped and absorbed within hair.

A form factor that bypasses hair and maximizes contact with the scalp is optimal.

The Problems with Helmets

Standard PBM helmets are not optimized for brain photobiomodulation. Here are several reasons why:

  • Helmets are inflexible

Because they are inflexible, they can’t accommodate variations in head sizes and shapes well.

  • Hair as a barrier

The inflexible dome-shape employed by PBM helmets is incapable of parting hair, causing maximal loss through hair absorption.

  • Distance between LEDs and the scalp

A problem caused by inflexibility: Not all diodes make contact with your scalp, creating distance and rapid energy loss through the inverse square law of radiation.

Additionally, PBM helmets often employ translucent plastic sheets as a shield from heat generated by low-tech LEDs. This creates additional resistance and dispersion.

  • Helmets often use many weak, inefficient LEDs

Utilizing many weak LEDs does not compensate for the loss in energy intensity required for tissue penetration. This method can generate high total power that is largely unutilized and converted to heat.

  • Helmets trap heat – ventilation is an issue

The lack of ventilation in closed helmets leads to heat build up, leading to discomfort.

The Vielight Neuro

The Vielight Neuro’s patented transcranial-intranasal design is engineered for optimal NIR energy transmission, minimal heat generation and maximum comfort.

Here are the reasons why our brain photobiomodulation technology is extensively used in brain photobiomodulation research, supported by many published studies.

FactorEngineering Response
Distance of NIR energy source from the scalp
  • Vie-LEDs are shaped to maximize contact with the scalp and minimize hair interference.
Sufficient surface radiant power density
  • Vie-LEDs generate an industry-leading 100 mW/cm2 of radiant power density and surface radiant power density.
  • Our patented LEDs are engineered to generate negligible heat despite an industry-leading power output.
  • Our surface radiant power density measurements are verified through independent testing and upheld through medical grade manufacturing certification standards.
Variations in head sizes and shapes
  • Adjustable bands and modules enable greater fit and contact.
  • Modular form factor enables ventilation, preventing heat buildup.
Targeting Different Brain Networks
  • Our transcranial modules are adjustable, enabling the diodes to be positioned over different scalp locations.

Figure: The body's optical window

Image source: Wang, Erica & Kaur, Ramanjot & Fierro, Manuel & Austin, Evan & Jones, Linda & Jagdeo, Jared. (2019). Safety and penetration of light into the brain. 10.1016/B978-0-12-815305-5.00005-1.

The 810nm Wavelength Choice

Based on computer modelling, the 810nm wavelength has been found to be superior to other wavelengths that includes 1064 nm. This was proposed in 2018, and confirmed in 2020. Part of the explanation for the deeper penetration allowed for 810 nm is the low absorbance by blood and water.

A recent study on vascular hemodynamics and cytochrome c oxidase redox activity by the Department of Bioengineering, University of Texas at Arlington examined the effects of different wavelengths within this range with
  • Lasers (800-1064nm / 200-250 mW/cm2 )
  • 810nm LED (135 mW/cm2):
The LED-based PBM results revealed three pieces of important experimental evidence:
(1) The 810 nm LED was able to create significant stimulations on vascular hemodynamic oxygenation and CCO redox metabolism despite the LED having a lower irradiance (≈135 mW/cm2), regardless of its broader and non-focusing nature of light.
(2) The dose-dependent trajectory by the 810 nm LED was similar to that by the 800 nm laser.
(3) The LED-triggered increases in Δ[oxCCO] remained at the elevated level without a returning tendency at least during the 5 min post-PBM period. In contrast, the increased Δ[oxCCO] by the 1064 nm laser started returning to the baseline immediately after the cease of the laser.
These findings are encouraging for us – our Vielight Neuro’s rear 810nm LED transcranial diodes generate ≈100 mW/cm2, which approaches the power density of ≈135 mW/cm2 used in the study. It underscores our commitment to fewer well-placed but sufficiently powerful diodes vs many weaker diodes. It also affirms the potential benefits vs the inherent dangers of the monochromatic light energy of lasers.

Figure: Penetration of 810nm energy through a human cadaver with the Vielight Neuro 3.

Image source: Uniformed Services University.

Light-Based Terminology

  • Radiant power density (mW/cm2)

Radiant power density is the amount of light energy emitted directly from the source.

Radiant power density can be hindered by distance and hair and is not an accurate indication.

  • Surface radiant power density (mW/cm2)

Surface radiant power density is the amount of light energy landed on a surface from the source.

While surface radiant power density and radiant power density share the same measurement unit mW/cm2, they are not equivalent.

Surface radiant power density gives an accurate picture of how much energy the scalp receives.

  • Total power

Total power is defined as the total amount of energy emitted over a period of time by all light sources.

Many weak inefficient LEDs can generate a high total power but if the surface radiant power density is too low and if blocked by hair, light energy won’t penetrate the skull.

A Competitive Snapshot

TechnologyForm Factor ResearchManufacturerMedical Grade
Vielight Neuro (Vielight)Modular15 published
(13 ongoing)
Vielight, CanadaYes
Weber Medical LED Infrared HelmetHelmet0 publishedSuyzeko, China
Neuradiant 1070 (Neuronic)Helmet1 publishedSuyzeko, China
Suyzeko PBM Helmet (Suyzeko)Helmet1 publishedSuyzeko, ChinaNo

The Intranasal Advantage

“Why the nose?” – the answer is simpler than meets the eye (or nose).

The nose is a gateway for light energy to reach ventral brain structures.

These brain structures located on the underside of the brain are otherwise inaccessible from the topside (transcranially).

The brain structures are:

  • The nasal (olfactory bulb) area, which is directly connected to memory processing regions (hippocampus, entorhinal cortex)
  • The ventromedial prefrontal cortex, which is responsible for supporting decision-making processes and is a main hub of the Default Mode Network.

Our Technological Lead

The Vielight Neuro Pro showcases our technological lead in the space of brain photobiomodulation.

The Neuro Pro unlocks the ability to experiment with different pulse frequencies, brain networks, synchronization etc. to help you discover optimal outcomes.

It has 8 adjustable modules that can be used to target different brain areas and networks.

LED TechnologyVie-LED technology (enables fewer diodes with maximal output and footprint)
Pulse rate0 Hz – 10,000 Hz
Power densityVariable and boostable up to 100 mW/cm2
Customizable Modules8 with smartphone controller (provided)
Customization TypesPulse Frequencies, Brain Network Targeting, Synchronization and Clustering

Targeting the Default Mode Network

The general health of the brain is often associated with the health of the default mode network (DMN), often considered the template network of the brain. It is a large-scale brain network primarily composed of the lateral parietal cortex, posterior cingulate cortex, medial prefrontal cortex, precuneus and the entorhinal cortex. The DMN is prominent when the brain is in its quiet state of repose.[1] Several brain diseases, including Alzheimer’s Disease and Parkinson’s Disease has been associated with dysfunctional DMN.[2]

In a nutshell, the Default Mode Network (DMN) has been linked to the general health of the brain and is involved in various domains of cognitive and social processing.

The Theory behind Pulse Rates

We have found that the pulse rate matters in brain PBM. The brain responds to pulse rate stimulation in specific ways. When we stimulate a healthy brain in gamma (40 Hz), we can elevate the amplitude of gamma and other fast waves in alpha and beta in the brain while reducing those of the slow delta and theta [3]. Independent researchers have found success in the use of the Vielight Neuro Gamma for dementia [4] , Parkinson’s Disease [5] ; and the Vielight Alpha (10 Hz) in traumatic brain injury [6] . However, please note that our devices are still general wellness device and not medical devices. We don’t claim efficacy for any indication and can only point towards research already published with our devices. (

Validation via Research

At Vielight, we understand the need to validate the engineering theory behind our devices with scientific data. A simple idea like placing LEDs on your head can turn surprisingly complex when taking different parameters into account, like the pulse rate, wavelength and power density to maximize efficacy.

With that in mind, we’ve invested heavily in research and clinical trials over the years. In fact, Vielight devices have the most published research in the field of brain photobiomodulation to date.

For a full list of published research that used our devices: Link

We’re grateful to all the research institutions we’ve collaborated with over the years and look forward to a bright future of discoveries together.

Care and Safety

Over the years, Vielight has released more than 100,000 devices into the market. There have been no reports of significant adverse events attributed to our products. This is also supported by the large, randomized control clinical trials using Vielight products.

All Vielight products have been independently tested for safety by accredited independent safety labs. Vielight is a rare photobiomodulation manufacturer that is classified as a medical device manufacturing company, certified under ISO 13485, MDSAP and MDR.

We manage the power of its LEDs to put care and safety first while pursuing optimal efficacy. We make no medical claim unless supported by scientific evidence.

Our pursuit of discovery

As an independent organization, we have committed the largest investment in clinical studies, contributing significantly to the knowledge pool in brain photobiomodulation. Our team is comprised of the largest concentration of PhD-level researchers in the industry to drive our vision.  Through Dr. Lew Lim and the engineering team being the earliest adopters in the field of home-use brain photobiomodulation, Vielight holds the most relevant patents in the field.

Every Vielight product is the result of intense research and engineering to offer the best in function, convenience and comfort.

Thank you for sharing our pursuit of discovery in brain photobiomodulation.


  1. Sormaz, M., Murphy, C., Wang, H. T., Hymers, M., Karapanagiotidis, T., Poerio, G., Margulies, D. S., Jefferies, E., & Smallwood, J. (2018). Default mode network can support the level of detail in experience during active task states. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America, 115(37), 9318–9323. doi: 10.1073/pnas.1721259115.
  2. Buckner, R.L., Andrews-Hanna J.R., Schacter D.L. (2018). The brain’s default network: anatomy, function, and relevance to disease. Ann N Y Acad Sci. 1124:1-38. doi: 10.1196/annals.1440.011. PMID: 18400922.
  3. Zomorrodi, R., Loheswaran, G., Pushparaj, A., & Lim, L. (2019). Pulsed Near Infrared Transcranial and Intranasal Photobiomodulation Significantly Modulates Neural Oscillations: a pilot exploratory study. Scientific Reports, 9. doi: 10.1038/s41598-019-42693-x.
  4. Chao L.L. (2019). Effects of Home Photobiomodulation Treatments on Cognitive and Behavioral Function, Cerebral Perfusion, and Resting-State Functional Connectivity in Patients with Dementia: A Pilot Trial. Photobiomodul Photomed Laser Surg. 37(3):133-141. doi: 10.1089/photob.2018.4555.
  5. Liebert A, Bicknell B, Laakso EL, Heller G, Jalilitabaei P, Tilley S, Mitrofanis J, Kiat H. (2021). Improvements in clinical signs of Parkinson’s disease using photobiomodulation: a prospective proof-of-concept study. BMC Neurol21(1):256. doi: 10.1186/s12883-021-02248-y.
  6. Chao LL, Barlow C, Karimpoor M, Lim L. Changes in Brain Function and Structure After Self-Administered Home Photobiomodulation Treatment in a Concussion Case. Front Neurol. 2020;11:952. Published 2020 Sep 8. doi:10.3389/fneur.2020.00952