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Institute of Microelectronics of Barcelona IMB-CNM   

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A self-calibrating and multiplexed electrochemical lab-on-a-chip for cell culture analysis and high-resolution imaging; Pablo Giménez-Gómez et al.; Lab Chip, 2020, Advance Article.This paper presents a new tool that allows a self-calibrating and multiplexed electrochemical lab-on-a-chip (ME-LoC) for cell culture analysis and high-resolution imaging. The ME-LoC contains a complex network of micro-channels and micro-chambers that allow compartmentalization of the reference electrode; cell seeding and proliferation without biofouling; electrode reactivation and recalibration; and multiple analyte detection, namely glucose and hydrogen peroxide concentrations, conductivity and ORP, as a way to monitor cell metabolism. Electrochemical analysis is completed with high-resolution imaging after labelling with fluorescent dyes. For its simplicity, integration, automation, compartmentalisation and microfluidic control, thist technology is a promising alternative for in vitro testing and organ-on-a-chip development in the near future.

Automated Determination of As(III) in Waters with an Electrochemical Sensor Integrated into a Modular Microfluidic System; Pablo Giménez-Gómez et al.; ACS Sensors, 2019, 4, 3156−3165. • Development of a robust electrochemical sensor integrated into a modular microfluidic system with the potential for on-site monitoring of inorganic As(III) species.
• Microfluidic system enabling the automatic sensor calibration, sample uptake, sample preconditioning and eventual As(III) detection.
• Linear system response to As(III) in a concentration range of 1−150 μg L−1, with a detection limit of 0.42 μg L−1 (below the threshold value of 10 μg L−1 set by WHO.
• System validated by measuring As(III) in tap water samples and samples from two Argentinean aquifers.

Impedimetric transducers based on interdigitated electrode arrays for bacterial detection; S.Brosel-Oliu et al.; A review, Anal.Chim.Acta, 2019, vol.1088, pp. 1-19. This review is focused on publications dealing with interdigitated electrodes as a transducer unit and different bacteria detection systems using these devices. The first part of the review deals with the impedance technique principles, paying special attention to the use of interdigitated electrodes, while the main part of this work is focused on applications ranging from bacterial growth monitoring to label-free specific bacteria detection.

Power module electronics in HEV/EV applications: New trends in wide ban-dgap semiconductor technologies and design aspects; A. Matallana et al.; Renewable and Sustainable Energy Reviews, vol. 113, October 2019. This paper presents an in-deep review of the state of the art concerning power modules, identifying the electrical requirements for the modules and the power conversion topologies that will best suit future HEV/EV drives. Current wide band-gap (WBG) technologies such as SiC and GaN, are reviewed and, after a market analysis, the most suitable power semiconductor devices are highlighted. Among them, it can be concluded that JBS diodes and MOSFETs are the most adequate for this application, because they can substitute traditional Si FRD diodes and Si IGBTs, providing lower power losses and higher operation temperatures. The migration from Si IGBTs to the aforementioned technologies would be simpler than expected, as the same firing circuitry (with minor modifications) can be reused. The paper, also focuses on practical design aspects of the module, such as optimum WBG die parallelization, placement and ceramic substrate routing. This work has been developed in a collaboration between the Teknologia Elektronikoa Saila - Bilboko Ingenieritza Goi Eskola Teknikoa - UPV/EHU and the Power Devices and Systems Group from IMB-CNM(CSIC).

Growth Monitoring With Submonolayer Sensitivity Via Real-Time Thermal-Conductance Measurements; P. Ferrando-Villalba et al.; Phys. Rev. Applied 12, 014007. Growth monitoring during the early stages of vapor deposition is of prime importance to understand the growth process, the microstructure, and thus the overall layer properties. We demonstrate that phonons can be used as an extremely sensitive probe to monitor the real-time evolution of film microstructure during growth. For that purpose, a silicon nitride membrane-based sensor is fabricated to measure the in-plane thermal conductivity of thin film samples. Operating with the 3ω-Völklein method at low frequencies, the sensor shows an exceptional resolution down to Δ(κ⋅t)=0.065W/mKnm, enabling accurate measurements even in poor conductive samples.

Electric Field Gradients and Bipolar Electrochemistry effects on Neural Growth: A finite element study on immersed electroactive conducting electrode materials; Ll. Abad et al.; Electrochimica Acta. Implantable electrodes act with direct electrical contact although recent work has shown that electrostimulation is also possible through non-contact wireless settings, through the generation of dipoles at the borders of the material by bipolar electrochemistry. Finite element studies shown here with the same configuration that the experimental processes described, evidence voltage profiles in qualitative agreement with known bipolar effects, although with a clear difference between intercalation materials and metals. These observations may explain the differences in neural cell growth observed for various substrate material.

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