Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

It’s Explosive! New Sensor Technology Patented

11.03.2004


New technology patented by researchers at the University of Wales, Bangor could lead to the development of ultra-sensitive sensors able to detect the presence of explosive materials. The sensors will have many security and military applications including being developed for use in the war against terrorism.



It is the innovative collaboration of molecular biology and chemistry that has enabled the team to develop the novel sensor technology ‘nano-dog’ to be developed to commercial prototype.

Much as the glucose pens used by diabetics employ enzymes to test blood-sugar levels, this complex high-tech sensor uses uniquely adapted and patented enzymes to detect the presence of explosive materials.


Some bacteria contain enzymes which are able to chemically modify many of the commonly used explosives. These bacteria have been used, particularly in the USA, to clean up land contaminated by munitions. The enzymes within the bacteria convert the explosives molecules to less toxic products, cleaning the contamination in the process. In this new process some of these enzymes have been purified from the bacteria and subjected to genetic modification. This modification has enabled the enzymes to adhere to the surface of an electrode sensor, where they remain active. There, they can trigger an electrical signal when activated by the presence of minute amounts of explosives molecules.

Chris Gwenin has been developing the project under the close guidance of Dr Maher Kalaji of the University’s Department of Chemistry and Prof Peter Williams of the School of Biological Sciences. He has been employed under a CASE Studentship, working with University spin-off company, Trwyn, who are now moving towards developing a prototype explosives detector to commercialize the technology.

“The project has moved forward at a tremendous pace, having reached a stage where we are able to patent our unique technology within 18 months of commencement,” said Dr Maher Kalaji. “The collaboration of expertise is what has led to the success. Crucial to the success of the project so far has been the unique combination of expertise from two discrete areas of molecular science. The success has also been aided by Chris Gwenin’s ability to develop new skills and expertise quickly,” commented Dr Maher Kalaji.

Commenting on the development, Professor Roy Evans, Vice-Chancellor of the University, said, “This is what is so exciting about research developments in higher education. The close collaboration of experts within different disciplines can take us to new ground. We have at Bangor a unique combination of expertise and I wish the company every success in taking this project forward commercial development.”

Elinor Elis-Williams | alfa
Further information:
http://www.bangor.ac.uk

More articles from Process Engineering:

nachricht Intelligent wheelchairs, predictive prostheses
20.12.2017 | Fraunhofer-Institut für Produktionstechnik und Automatisierung IPA

nachricht Jelly with memory – predicting the leveling of com-mercial paints
15.12.2017 | Fraunhofer-Institut für Produktionstechnik und Automatisierung IPA

All articles from Process Engineering >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: Artificial agent designs quantum experiments

On the way to an intelligent laboratory, physicists from Innsbruck and Vienna present an artificial agent that autonomously designs quantum experiments. In initial experiments, the system has independently (re)discovered experimental techniques that are nowadays standard in modern quantum optical laboratories. This shows how machines could play a more creative role in research in the future.

We carry smartphones in our pockets, the streets are dotted with semi-autonomous cars, but in the research laboratory experiments are still being designed by...

Im Focus: Scientists decipher key principle behind reaction of metalloenzymes

So-called pre-distorted states accelerate photochemical reactions too

What enables electrons to be transferred swiftly, for example during photosynthesis? An interdisciplinary team of researchers has worked out the details of how...

Im Focus: The first precise measurement of a single molecule's effective charge

For the first time, scientists have precisely measured the effective electrical charge of a single molecule in solution. This fundamental insight of an SNSF Professor could also pave the way for future medical diagnostics.

Electrical charge is one of the key properties that allows molecules to interact. Life itself depends on this phenomenon: many biological processes involve...

Im Focus: Paradigm shift in Paris: Encouraging an holistic view of laser machining

At the JEC World Composite Show in Paris in March 2018, the Fraunhofer Institute for Laser Technology ILT will be focusing on the latest trends and innovations in laser machining of composites. Among other things, researchers at the booth shared with the Aachen Center for Integrative Lightweight Production (AZL) will demonstrate how lasers can be used for joining, structuring, cutting and drilling composite materials.

No other industry has attracted as much public attention to composite materials as the automotive industry, which along with the aerospace industry is a driver...

Im Focus: Room-temperature multiferroic thin films and their properties

Scientists at Tokyo Institute of Technology (Tokyo Tech) and Tohoku University have developed high-quality GFO epitaxial films and systematically investigated their ferroelectric and ferromagnetic properties. They also demonstrated the room-temperature magnetocapacitance effects of these GFO thin films.

Multiferroic materials show magnetically driven ferroelectricity. They are attracting increasing attention because of their fascinating properties such as...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

Event News

10th International Symposium: “Advanced Battery Power – Kraftwerk Batterie” Münster, 10-11 April 2018

08.01.2018 | Event News

See, understand and experience the work of the future

11.12.2017 | Event News

Innovative strategies to tackle parasitic worms

08.12.2017 | Event News

 
Latest News

Let the good tubes roll

19.01.2018 | Materials Sciences

How cancer metastasis happens: Researchers reveal a key mechanism

19.01.2018 | Health and Medicine

Meteoritic stardust unlocks timing of supernova dust formation

19.01.2018 | Physics and Astronomy

VideoLinks
B2B-VideoLinks
More VideoLinks >>>