Magnetoelastic Sensors for Biomedical Monitoring

Period of Performance: 04/01/2000 - 03/31/2001


Phase 1 SBIR

Recipient Firm

Sentechbiomed Corporation
State College, PA 16803
Principal Investigator


This proposal seeks support for the development and application of a new sensor technology that enables remote, in-situ, real-time simultaneous measurement of pressure, temperature, and pH. The sensors are comprised of ribbon-shaped films of magnetostrictive, magnetoelastic amorphous metallic glass. In response to a magnetic field pulse the sensors efficiently translate magnetic energy into elastic energy which, in turn, acts to mechanically deform the sensor. Since the material is magnetostrictive, the mechanical deformation acts to generate time- varying magnetic flux that can be detected through the use of a remotely located pickup coil. This mechanical deformation demonstrates a resonance the frequency of which is dependent upon the inter-facial physics between the medium and the sensor, allowing determination of pressure, temperature, and liquid viscosity. In combination with a mass changing chemically response layer, chemical analyte concentrations can be monitored as well. The sensors have a unit cost of approximately $0.01, allowing them to be used on a disposable basis. Under the auspices of this program the sensor assembly and processing electronics will be extended, miniaturized, and packaged allowing for translation of the technology from laboratory to application. PROPOSED COMMERCIAL APPLICATION: Remote, real-time, in-situ measurement of gastric pH and pressure from a disposable sensor that the patient could simply swallow would be an immense improvement over current technology for monitoring of esophageal symptoms. The remote query nature of the technology would also find great utility for in-situ monitoring of biological chemical analyte concentrations such as glucose.