Aug 16 2010
The Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) awarded $6.3 million to the GE Global Research for the improvement of bio-inspired sensors in the nanoscale range for extremely discerning use in the explosives and warfare agent detection.
Earlier scientists at the GE identified that the nanostructures in butterflies’ wing possesses intense chemical sensing behavior. From then on the scientists were keen in replicating this unique behavior. The DARPA supports this research financially for improving this sensing technology.
According to Dr.Radislav Potyrailo, Principal scientist and principal investigator, GE Global Research, the bio-inspired sensors from GE will drastically enhance the flexibility, speed and precision in identifying the chemical hazards thereby monitoring and preventing the danger caused by it.
Potyrailo added that nanoscale sensors can be manufactured on a diminutive scale with less expenditure permitting production of large quantities of the sensors and using it under necessity. The unique sensing ability along with small size and fabrication benefits makes it suitable for many vital applications. The major healthcare and industrial implications of the sensor involves monitoring food and beverages, assessing abrasion remedials, detecting diseases by breath analysis, refinement of water and monitoring emissions from power plants.
Potyrailo comments that GE’s unique sensors help in improving the quality and accuracy of the data collected from different areas with high precision.
Viktoria Greanya, DARPA Program Manager explained that DARPA’s aim is to exploit nature’s photonic complex structures and amending the material technology so as to create supreme photonic systems in the infrared and visible spectrum.
For the development of nanoscale bio-inspired sensors, GE has acquired an eminent team of scientists from various fields such as material technology, analytical chemistry, optical engineering, polymer chemistry, and nanofabrication engineering technology.