Micro-Sensors and Actuators

4M Micro-Sensors & Actuators Division

Head: Paul Kirby, Cranfield

Division Objectives

  • To provide a framework to advance the development of Micro-Sensors and Actuators, especially those involving 4M technology.
  • To identify and investigate emerging technologies which have high commercial potential where micro-sensors and actuators need to be developed or used in a new environments.
  • To establish a (virtual) European of Excellence for micro-sensors and actuators providing:
    • Web based documentation of the capabilities of mS&A members as a reference to 4M members and wider EU interest.
    • Form a two-way channel between 4M partners in the mS&A division and external industrial partners for the dissemination of FP6 and other divisional projects and the identification of technological “white-spots” through interaction with industry
    • Provide archival and editorial expertise to initiate and guide review publications on micro-sensors and actuators developments in the EU.
  • In the period 24-48 months to identify and focus the mS&A cluster capability groupings on technical solutions, where the output of collective activities will bring significant benefit to European industry in the medium term. In particular:
    • Complete and keep current a review of new materials for sensors and actuators and produce a document that will be a valuable reference for industrial engineers.
    • Form a two-way channel between 4M partners in the mS&A division and external industrial partners for the dissemination of FP6 and other divisional projects and the identification of technological “white-spots” through interaction with industry.
    • To research new applications of 4M technology for manufacture of optical/electrical sensors for implantable medical sensors and micro-sensing and actuation in cell measurement systems.
    • To provide web based documentation of the capabilities of the Sensors and Actuators cluster as a reference for 4M divisions.
  • Use the expertise within the mS&A Division to set up cross-divisional activities to exploit 4M polymer, ceramic and metal structuring technology.
  • To provide prepare joint proposals for National and European funding that build upon the achieved integration of resources.

Description of work

In the second half (months 24-48) of the programme further consolidation of the division activities will continue including improving mS&A web presence with data-bases of members’ capabilities. Building on the outcomes of the previous two years increased links will be formed with industry to guide road-mapping studies of mS&A science, technology and manufacturing issues and a new task in the important developing area of actuators and sensors for cell transport will be initiated. The following tasks will form the framework for achieving these ambitions:

New Micro- Sensors and Actuators Applications

Task 11.1 (Task leaders: Daniel Benz, Wouter van der Wijngaart and Arne Luker)

Partner projects and divisional outcomes will be disseminated through 4M (e.g. Q2M and the review of low-cost sensors previously undertaken). The mS&A web presence will be further enhanced with partners’ capabilities and the output of mS&A tasks, roadmapping, reviews etc.

Task 11.4 (Task leader: Zoran Djinovic)

Implantable sensors and actuators. Several expert groups will focus on research in the field of biocompatible materials and technologies reviewing different actuating techniques applicable in the human body. This review will consider analysis of standard techniques of mechanical movement with accuracy of about 5 µm as well as new actuation principles. This review will also contain analysis of possibilities for the remote control of mechanical movement with the 5 µm accuracy.

Task 11.5 (Task leaders: Stephen Wilson, Robert Wright, Paul Kirby, Cristina Rusu, Carmen Moldovan, Marcel Tidjink, Nadja Adamovic )

An editorial board will be established with the long term aim of establishing a library of EU work on micro-Sensors and Actuators.

Task 11.6 (Task leader Sandra Wilson, FZK)

Micro-sensing and actuation technologies for cell transport and measurement systems. The work of several expert groups will be reviewed together with the application of 4M technology in this field.

Task 11.7 (Daniel Benz, Wouter van der Wijngaart, Paul Kirby, Cristina Rusu, Nadja Adamovic, Chris Bowen, Carmen Moldovan, Marcel Tidjink)

Topical joint industrial and academic meetings to discuss and map out the requirements for future research in micro-sensors and actuators. Contact conference between mS&A and Ceramic clusters organised for 8th November, 2006 to develop joint projects.


D11.4.2 Review of state-of-the-art actuating techniques applicable in the human body and the possibilities for remote control (month 42, R, PU)
D11.5.1 Identification of two reviews for future publication in the field of micro-sensors and actuators (month 42,R,PU)
D11.6.1 Report on methods of cell transport and cell measurement systems.(month 42,R,PU)

Milestones and expected results

M11.1.4 Partners capabilities described on mS&A web page within 4M web site. (month 30, O, CO)
M11.7.1 First industrial/academic forum topic and event planned (month 36, O, CO)

Projects originating from mS&A Divisional activity

Q2M is a project originating from mS&A Divisional activity. For more information visit: The Q2M web pages.

Submitted on October 29, 2004 - 12:49.


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