Institute for Microsensors, -actuators and -systems

Welcome to IMSAS


At IMSAS we investigate microsystems, sensors, and microfluidic devices for applications ranging from medical analysis to industrial measurement systems. In our research projects we cooperate with academia, research institutions, and industry. We have a 900 m2 clean room with in-house facilities covering all the key technologies relevant for the realization of smart sensing and microfluidic systems . 

The Institute, which is headed by Prof. Michiel Vellekoop and by Prof. Björn Lüssem (since September 2021), employs around 45 people of which 20 are working towards a Ph.D. degree.

Group Lang: Sensors, Sensorintegration, Neuroimplants and Sensornets

Our group investigates thermal flow sensors on solid and flexible substrates. Outstanding parameters are high temperature stability, chemical resistance and high sensitivity. 

Sensor integration at IMSAS means the embedding of sensors in materials. The goal is to integrate the sensors into materials in such a way that macroscopic properties, like for example the material stability, are not influenced. To reach this aim, smaller sensor elements and new material embedding techniques are necessary.

Together with cognition scientists we develop neuroimplants with the long-term objective to convey optical impressions through a cortical visual prosthesis to a blind person.

In the project “The Intelligent Container” a sensor network is developed which measures parameters of perishable goods, for example the ripeness level of fruits inside a container. Using ripeness models, the remaining shelf-life is estimated whereby the logistic process is improved.


Group Lüssem: Flexible Sensor Systems

Our group studies and develops novel flexible sensors and sensor systems based on organic semiconductors.  Organic chemistry provides us with a near endless parameter space to optimize organic semiconductors and to tailor the properties of organic semiconductors towards dedicated applications. This additional degree of freedom has been used to design novel devices; the most prominent ones are Organic Light-Emitting Diodes, but Organic Photovoltaics and Organic Sensors are highly promising fields as well.

We study the use of organic semiconductors in organic biosensors. Our research focuses on Organic Electrochemical Transistors, which reach high signal gains and can be processed at low costs. We study different approaches to functionalize these transistors and develop new processes to integrate organic sensors into larger systems and to interface them with conventional electronics.

Organic sensors and sensor systems show high promise in several commercial applications. In particular the flexible nature of organic semiconductors enables the design of wearable sensor systems. Furthermore, the bio-compatibility of most materials can be used to form a strong link between organic devices and biological matter, which is in particular promising for the field of intra-body networks.


Group Vellekoop: Physical Chemosensors und Microfluidics

The group investigates new approaches for miniaturized measurement systems for fluids. These systems are based on the concept of Physical Chemosensing: the determination of (bio)chemical concentrations or properties using physical measurement principles, which yields long term stability and straightforward fabrication compared to other methods. The applications range from life sciences to industrial liquids. The microfluidic chips are designed and realized in-house (IMSAS-MCB).

Our multidisciplinary research is conducted in cooperation with partners from biotechnology, hospitals, and industry. The group coordinates the Marie Curie Initial Training Network (ITN) EngCaBra in which engineering methods for the analysis of cancer and brain diseases are investigated. Current research topics are medical- and biochips, cell analysis, microfluidics and optofluidics, integrated sensors and sensor technology.