A new European consortium, PHOTOSENS, is developing a polymer-based
nanophotonic sensor chip to screen air quality, to aid pharmaceutical process
cleanliness and for food safety applications.
The 3-year PHOTOSENS project aims for a disposable, mass-producible sensor
chip for generic multi-parameter sensing applications. A key requirement is to
perform screening tests without specialized infrastructure. By combining
nanophotonics, tailored polymer materials and mass-manufacturability, the
project is challenging conventional analytical techniques which usually
require expensive equipment and personnel.
consortium brings together world-leading institutes and multinational
companies across Europe. VTT Technical Research Centre of Finland leads the
programme, with the core nanophotonic technology provided by the University of
Southampton (UK), novel silicone-based materials by Momentive (Germany),
chemical functionalization by TNO (the Netherlands) and the University of
Vienna (Austria) and roll-to-roll mass-manufacturing technology provided by
Nanocomp (Finland) and 3D AG (Switzerland). Philips (the Netherlands) and
Renishaw Diagnostics (UK) provide the application knowledge and demonstration
environment. VTT’s contribution is in transferring nanophotonic structures
into polymer structures by the use of UV nanoimprinting as well as integration
of the multi-parameter sensor.
“Renishaw Diagnostics is
expecting new materials and sensors developed in the project to revolutionize
photonics sensing applications”, says David Eustace from Renishaw Diagnostics.
project will open up new opportunities for silicones and silanes in the
photonic and optical market. The development of these markets has gained
momentum”, says Jos Delis from Momentive.