Integrated Medical Microsystems
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Title: Integrated Medical Microsystems

Speaker: Professor Paddy French

Date/Time: 13 January, from 13:40-14:30

Place: FENS G029

Abstract: Increasingly microsystems are being used in medical applications. In-vitro devices are being used to reduce the size of the sample required and to speed up analysis. In the field of in-vivo applications make silicon microsystems ideal for implants. The issue of biocompatibility must be addressed, and this is often done with coating layers and suitable packaging. Early devices for in-vivo applications were the pressure sensors for catheters. This remains a large market for sensors, since they are usually disposables. Further sensors and actuators for catheters have since been developed. A greater challenge for the developers is the longer term implants. Devices for monitoring can be left in the body for a number of weeks, or perhaps months. These can be used for monitoring after an operation. Longer term implants have to meet much stricter regulations for safety and biocompatibility. In the field of actuators there have been a number of examples of micro-pumps, for chronic ailments. Other devices include neural stimulators. The cochlear implant is a good example and many have been implanted in patients around the world. Commercial devices to-date have been hand-made and not using silicon technology. However, new generations of cochlear implants, using silicon technology, are being developed and these will lead to better sound quality and greater functionality. Retinal implants are not as far, but are promising solutions for blindness. This presentation will show the development of microsystems for medical applications with examples of successful devices.

Bio: Paddy French received his B.Sc. in mathematics and M.Sc. in electronics from Southampton University, UK, in 1981 and 1982, respectively. In 1986 he obtained his Ph.D., also from Southampton University, which was a study of the piezoresistive effect in polysilicon. After 18 months as a post‑doc at Delft University, The Netherlands, he moved to Japan in 1988. For 3 years he worked on sensors for automotives at the Central Engineering Laboratories of Nissan Motor Company. He returned to Delft University in May 1991 and is now a staff member of the Laboratory for Electronic Instrumentation In 1999 he was awarded the Antoni van Leeuwenhoek chair and in June 2002 he became head of the Electronic Instrumentation Laboratory. He is Editor-in-chief of Sensors and Actuators A and General Editor of Sensors and Actuators A&B. His research interests are integrated sensor systems, micromachining, in particular for medical applications.