As part of his final year project in his Masters degree in Electromechanical Engineering, which he studied at the University's School of Electronics and Computer Science (ECS), Fauzan Baharudin explored the potential for the use of thick film technology in the development of medical sensors which could be embedded in the knee during surgery.
This new sensor, called Serial In-vivo Transducer (SIT), which uses thick film technology, could measure tendon force during Anterior Cruciate Ligament (ACL) reconstruction.
The ACL is the most commonly injured ligament and is commonly damaged by athletes, in fact it is reported that this is the ligament associated with Tiger Woods’ injury.
Fauzan’s project was supervised by Professor Neil White at ECS, who, in 1991 developed thick film piezoelectric material which made it possible to produce a sensor which could power itself if it were installed in a device that vibrates and would be ideal for appliances where physical connections to the outside world were difficult.
Professor White said: ‘Although this work is still in its infancy, our earlier research in thick-film sensors has shown that it is feasible to apply the technology to medical applications such as prosthetic hands. We have also shown that it is possible to harvest energy from the human body using piezoelectric materials and the knee is subjected to very high levels of force during everyday activities. It therefore seems logical to combine the two approaches to deliver a new type of embedded, self-powered sensors
In Fauzan’s project entitled Assessing the use of thick-film technology in knee surgery: along with energy harvesting in-vivo, he has also incorporated some of this energy harvesting capability into SIT which means that it will be self-powered.
'I chose knee surgery because this has been very little research carried out in this field and I felt a self-powered device could work well in the knee,' he said.
Before developing SIT, Fauzan reviewed the existing devices in this field and concluded that due to its flexibility in fabrication, low capital cost, fast lead time and its suitability for use in the body, thick film technology is the best solution for ACL surgery. Assessment of the energy harvesting feature revealed that the device could produce more than enough energy to power itself.
'It remains a mystery to me, given how common knee injuries are among athletes, that devices like ours have not been developed before now,' said Fauzan. 'A sensible assumption for this is that thick film technology does not reach medical researchers as quickly as it does within the microelectronics community hence the delay in realising the huge potential in developing in vivo transducers.'
Helene Murphy | alfa
Study suggests possible new target for treating and preventing Alzheimer's
02.12.2016 | Oregon Health & Science University
The first analysis of Ewing's sarcoma methyloma opens doors to new treatments
01.12.2016 | IDIBELL-Bellvitge Biomedical Research Institute
A multi-institutional research collaboration has created a novel approach for fabricating three-dimensional micro-optics through the shape-defined formation of porous silicon (PSi), with broad impacts in integrated optoelectronics, imaging, and photovoltaics.
Working with colleagues at Stanford and The Dow Chemical Company, researchers at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign fabricated 3-D birefringent...
In experiments with magnetic atoms conducted at extremely low temperatures, scientists have demonstrated a unique phase of matter: The atoms form a new type of quantum liquid or quantum droplet state. These so called quantum droplets may preserve their form in absence of external confinement because of quantum effects. The joint team of experimental physicists from Innsbruck and theoretical physicists from Hannover report on their findings in the journal Physical Review X.
“Our Quantum droplets are in the gas phase but they still drop like a rock,” explains experimental physicist Francesca Ferlaino when talking about the...
The Max Planck Institute for Physics (MPP) is opening up a new research field. A workshop from November 21 - 22, 2016 will mark the start of activities for an innovative axion experiment. Axions are still only purely hypothetical particles. Their detection could solve two fundamental problems in particle physics: What dark matter consists of and why it has not yet been possible to directly observe a CP violation for the strong interaction.
The “MADMAX” project is the MPP’s commitment to axion research. Axions are so far only a theoretical prediction and are difficult to detect: on the one hand,...
Broadband rotational spectroscopy unravels structural reshaping of isolated molecules in the gas phase to accommodate water
In two recent publications in the Journal of Chemical Physics and in the Journal of Physical Chemistry Letters, researchers around Melanie Schnell from the Max...
The efficiency of power electronic systems is not solely dependent on electrical efficiency but also on weight, for example, in mobile systems. When the weight of relevant components and devices in airplanes, for instance, is reduced, fuel savings can be achieved and correspondingly greenhouse gas emissions decreased. New materials and components based on gallium nitride (GaN) can help to reduce weight and increase the efficiency. With these new materials, power electronic switches can be operated at higher switching frequency, resulting in higher power density and lower material costs.
Researchers at the Fraunhofer Institute for Solar Energy Systems ISE together with partners have investigated how these materials can be used to make power...
16.11.2016 | Event News
01.11.2016 | Event News
14.10.2016 | Event News
02.12.2016 | Medical Engineering
02.12.2016 | Agricultural and Forestry Science
02.12.2016 | Physics and Astronomy