Dr Steve Ebbens, a research associate in the department of Chemical and Biological Engineering, has been awarded a prestigious EPSRC Career Acceleration fellowship. Currently working with Dr Jon Howse, this fellowship will allow Steve to develop his career independently.
The award is entitled "Using Self-Assembling Swimming Devices to Control Motion at the Nanoscale".
The abstract for the award is as follows:
"The aim of this Fellowship is to build miniaturized swimming devices that can direct themselves towards targets without external intervention, to enable a range of applications including drug delivery. The devices will also be used to transport material for analysis within microfluidic medical diagnostic tools and mix fluids in the channels of these systems. The enhanced motion of the swimmers will also speed up reaction rates in chemical processes, resulting in faster industrial processes.
To achieve these aims the Fellowship will build more powerful, faster swimming devices with specific trajectories. This will involve controlling the way in which the small parts, from which the swimming devices are assembled, stick together by using Chemistry. Also obstacle courses will be designed to separate the devices according to their trajectories, allowing "natural selection" of the best arrangements. Autonomous targeting and cargo management will be built into the devices using materials that can expand and contract in response to changes in the fluid surrounding them."
Congratulations to Steve on this wonderful achievement!