Amherst, New York, June 21, 2004--Johnson & Johnson has committed $180,000 to the University of Buffalo to develop a smart sensor system (BIS3) for medical and industrial applications. The grant to the School of Engineering and Applied Sciences will support a project led by two faculty members in the Department of Electrical Engineerin--Albert Titus, assistant professor, and Alexander Cartwright, associate professor--conducted through the UB Institute for Lasers, Photonics and Biophotonics.
The proposed system in the University of Buffalo study integrates the specificity of immunological selection, nanotechnology, fiber optics and electro-flexible polymeric membranes as a prototype for the detection of targeted biologics. Titus explained that such a system could be designed to detect the presence and quantity of certain biologic elements.
"The intelligence of the system enables it to respond and perhaps make other measurements to verify the initial reading, and then respond in other ways," Titus said.
While other research projects exist on sensor technology, the approach of the UB project is unique and, combined with the sensor technology the UB group is developing, "will be successful," according to Titus.
As research advances, Titus said the technology could lead to other uses, including life support. "Ultimately, the goal would be to have a self-contained system that can supplement organ function in the human body," he said.
The Institute for Lasers, Photonics and Biophotonics is a multidisciplinary research center that incorporates the expertise of chemists, physicists, engineers and biomedical researchers. The institute's work in smart sensor technology involves the integration of photonics technology--from photonics communications, to photonics-based sensors, to hybrid electronic/photonic processing for a distributed smart sensor network--with chemical and biological detection modalities.