A Versatile Wearable Chemical Sensor using Ultrasound gas sensing technology (CMUTs)

Period of Performance: 05/02/2017 - 11/01/2017

$100K

Phase 1 SBIR

Recipient Firm

Aromatix Technologies
2033 Gateway Place Suite 577
San Jose, CA 95110
Firm POC, Principal Investigator

Abstract

We will develop a compact solid-state gas sensor using a novel ultrasound technology called CMUTs, invented by renowned Stanford Professor B. Khuri-Yakub two decades earlier. Although its application in gas sensors was known for some time, its challenges have so far prevented its commercialization. Aromatix Technologies has identified solution to each of these challenges, which are the subjects of research in this project. Capacitive Micromachined Ultrasound Transceivers, or CMUTs, have the highest sensitivity of all gas sensors to date. Using polymer coating, the ultrasound devices use gravimetric sensing principle to detect the concentration of a target gas. However its selectivity is moderate compared to technologies such as infrared or gas chromatography. Aromatix Technologies has perfected the Machine Learning algorithm for ultrasound systems for gas sensing to circumvent the issue; we have demonstrated that sensitivity and selectivity can both be achieved using Machine learning algorithms. CMUT's size, low cost, low power and the ability to functionalize the sensor with targeted polymers make it an ideal candidate for wearable chemical sensor badge. However there are a couple of challenges which we need to overcome for its commercialization: charge buildup in CMUTs degrading its sensitivity with time, poor selectivity, high sensitivity to humidity and temperature. We have assembled the best talents in the industry in each field to address these issues. The details are discussed in the Research Plan. We have done the necessary groundwork to ensure success and we are confident that we can commercialize the technology in six to eight quarters.