Spatial sampling of MEG and EEG based on generalized spatial-frequency analysis and optimal design

Joonas Iivanainen*, Antti J. Mäkinen, Rasmus Zetter, Matti Stenroos, Risto J. Ilmoniemi, Lauri Parkkonen

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleScientificpeer-review

16 Citations (Scopus)
74 Downloads (Pure)


In this paper, we analyze spatial sampling of electro- (EEG) and magnetoencephalography (MEG), where the electric or magnetic field is typically sampled on a curved surface such as the scalp. By simulating fields originating from a representative adult-male head, we study the spatial-frequency content in EEG as well as in on- and off-scalp MEG. This analysis suggests that on-scalp MEG, off-scalp MEG and EEG can benefit from up to 280, 90 and 110 spatial samples, respectively. In addition, we suggest a new approach to obtain sensor locations that are optimal with respect to prior assumptions. The approach also allows to control, e.g., the uniformity of the sensor locations. Based on our simulations, we argue that for a low number of spatial samples, model-informed non-uniform sampling can be beneficial. For a large number of samples, uniform sampling grids yield nearly the same total information as the model-informed grids.

Original languageEnglish
Article number118747
Pages (from-to)1-15
Number of pages15
Publication statusPublished - 15 Dec 2021
MoE publication typeA1 Journal article-refereed


  • Electroencephalography
  • Magnetoencephalography
  • On-scalp MEG
  • Optimal design
  • Spatial frequency
  • Spatial sampling


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