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 Harder 3D-printed tools – Researchers from Dresden introduce new process for hardmetal industry
11.10.2018 | Fraunhofer-Institut für Keramische Technologien und Systeme IKTS

nachricht Flying High with VCSEL Heating
04.10.2018 | Fraunhofer-Institut für Lasertechnik ILT

All articles from Process Engineering >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

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

Im Focus: Goodbye, silicon? On the way to new electronic materials with metal-organic networks

Scientists at the Max Planck Institute for Polymer Research (MPI-P) in Mainz (Germany) together with scientists from Dresden, Leipzig, Sofia (Bulgaria) and Madrid (Spain) have now developed and characterized a novel, metal-organic material which displays electrical properties mimicking those of highly crystalline silicon. The material which can easily be fabricated at room temperature could serve as a replacement for expensive conventional inorganic materials used in optoelectronics.

Silicon, a so called semiconductor, is currently widely employed for the development of components such as solar cells, LEDs or computer chips. High purity...

Im Focus: Storage & Transport of highly volatile Gases made safer & cheaper by the use of “Kinetic Trapping"

Augsburg chemists present a new technology for compressing, storing and transporting highly volatile gases in porous frameworks/New prospects for gas-powered vehicles

Storage of highly volatile gases has always been a major technological challenge, not least for use in the automotive sector, for, for example, methane or...

Im Focus: Disrupting crystalline order to restore superfluidity

When we put water in a freezer, water molecules crystallize and form ice. This change from one phase of matter to another is called a phase transition. While this transition, and countless others that occur in nature, typically takes place at the same fixed conditions, such as the freezing point, one can ask how it can be influenced in a controlled way.

We are all familiar with such control of the freezing transition, as it is an essential ingredient in the art of making a sorbet or a slushy. To make a cold...

Im Focus: Micro energy harvesters for the Internet of Things

Fraunhofer IWS Dresden scientists print electronic layers with polymer ink

Thin organic layers provide machines and equipment with new functions. They enable, for example, tiny energy recuperators. In future, these will be installed...

Im Focus: Dynamik einzelner Proteine

Neue Messmethode erlaubt es Forschenden, die Bewegung von Molekülen lange und genau zu verfolgen

Das Zusammenspiel aus Struktur und Dynamik bestimmt die Funktion von Proteinen, den molekularen Werkzeugen der Zelle. Durch Fortschritte in der...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

VideoLinks
Industry & Economy
Event News

Conference to pave the way for new therapies

17.10.2018 | Event News

Berlin5GWeek: Private industrial networks and temporary 5G connectivity islands

16.10.2018 | Event News

5th International Conference on Cellular Materials (CellMAT), Scientific Programme online

02.10.2018 | Event News

 
Latest News

Gravitational Waves Could Shed Light on Dark Matter

22.10.2018 | Physics and Astronomy

Nanocages in the lab and in the computer: how DNA-based dendrimers transport nanoparticles

19.10.2018 | Life Sciences

Thin films from Braunschweig on the way to Mercury

19.10.2018 | Physics and Astronomy

VideoLinks
Science & Research
Overview of more VideoLinks >>>