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Acetone sensors for glycemic level measurement

Grant number: 19/09905-2
Support type:Research Grants - Innovative Research in Small Business - PIPE
Duration: June 01, 2020 - February 28, 2021
Field of knowledge:Interdisciplinary Subjects
Principal researcher:Marcelo Antonio Donizetti Martinho
Grantee:Marcelo Antonio Donizetti Martinho
Company:Nchemi Engenharia de Materiais Ltda
CNAE: Pesquisa e desenvolvimento experimental em ciências físicas e naturais
City: São Carlos
Assoc. researchers:Tiago de Góes Conti
Associated scholarship(s):20/08920-5 - Acetone sensors for glycemic level measurement, BP.PIPE


Diabetes is a disease that affects the quality of life of millions of people and is also responsible for the deaths of millions of people each year in the world. Diabetics who have a periodic glycemic control rate suffer from the invasive method of sensors that are typically painful and uncomfortable, due the demand of blood samples for analysis, especially for children and the elderly. For this reason, in Brazil and in the world there is a demand for less invasive methods and using simple and low-cost sensors to monitor the glycemic level of diabetics, which can represent a market of billions of reais. An alternative to such a demand is the analysis of volatile organic compounds that are naturally exhaled in the breath. For diabetics, the change in the glycemic level of the patient generates a change in the amount of acetone released into the breath, which is proportional to the glycemic level present in the blood. Several acetone sensors are described in the literature, however the high working temperature, high cost, lack of sensitivity and specificity make difficult its practical and widespread application. To meet this demand, this project proposes the development of a sensor based on a nanostructured thin film (composed of 10nm particles) that can overcome the difficulties encountered in acetone sensors. The main technological challenge in the first phase of the project is the synthesis of nanoparticles of tungsten oxide, already known as acetone sensor, with controlled size and desired properties to obtain thin films homogeneous and with controlled microstructure. In this way, nanoparticles, thin films and sensors are characterized films will be characterized by techniques such as X-ray diffraction (XRD), thermogravimetry (TG), transmission electron microscopy (TEM), scanning electron microscopy (SEM) four-tip probe method (surface electrical resistance) and sensor test in controlled gas chamber. (AU)

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