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MESA+ News

25 Nov 2014 - First blue-energy power plant opened, UT made large contribution His Majesty King Willem-Alexander will put the first blue-energy power plant in the world to use on Wednesday, 26 November. In this test plant at the Afsluitdijk the joining of river and sea water is used to generate sustainable energy. This is because by using cleverly designed membranes (special filters), you can generate electricity directly from the difference in salt concentration. Researchers from the University of Twente's MESA+ research institute supplied the knowledge for the membranes and the technology for this power station. 13 Nov 2014 - Three-dimensional microtechnology with Origami folding art Antoine Legrain, doctoral degree candidate at the University of Twente, has developed a method to design microtechnology in three dimensions. The existing mini-electronics in computers and smartphones, for example, is strongly two-dimensional and is built on a very thin layer. In a micro world in 3D, more transistors can be inserted in an enclosure, so we get more memory or faster processors. Legrain was inspired in his work by Origami, the Japanese art of folding, which he applies at the micro level. In this case, he works with structures that have the diameter of a grain of salt.
11 Nov 2014 - An air cushion for falling droplets Falling droplets bounce as many as fifteen times before they come to rest on a flat surface. In the past, it was believed that this phenomenon is limited to water drops on superhydrophobic surfaces. Research performed by scientists from UT's MESA+ research institute, published today in the leading scientific journal Nature Physics shows that the phenomenon applies to a much broader class of materials including to oils and to wetting surfaces because the drops can bounce on a microscopic layer of entrapped air. This emerges from fundamental research. According to prof. dr. Frieder Mugele, this knowledge is in part important for applications in the field of inkjet printing, medical inhalers and coating technology. 7 Nov 2014 - Line dancing bacteria on a chip By changing the direction of a magnetic field, so-called magneto-tactic bacteria are able to make a full U-turn. They can be taught line dancing in this way, inside the tiny micro channels of a lab on a chip. Magnetically steered objects will be capable of delivering medication, for example. Scientists of the MESA+ Institute for Nanotechnology and the Korean Institute of Science and Technology recorded an award-winning video about this. 29 Oct 2014 - 'Swiss cheese' membrane with variable holes A new membrane, developed by University of Twente scientists, can be made more or less porous ‘on demand’. In this way, smart switching between ‘open’ and ‘closed’ is possible, which opens the way to innovative applications in biosensors, chemical analysis and katalysis. The researchers of the MESA+ Institute for Nanotechnology present their results in ‘Angewandte Chemie’. Their paper is designated ‘very important’ by the journal. 28 Oct 2014 - TST biomimetic research awarded Harmen Droogendijk was selected by an international jury for a 3rd place in the Bionic-Award 2014. The biannual award is made possible by the Schauenburg foundation and selection and ceremony are carried out under auspices of the VDI (“Verein Deutscher Ingenieure” or “Association of German Engineers”). The price was awarded for the quality of the biomimetic work carried out in the framework of the NWO/STW VICI project BioEARS (Bioinspired Engineering of Array Sensors) on the analysis, understanding and technical implementation of hair-based flow-sensors as inspired by the flow-sensitive hairs found on the cerci of crickets. 23 Oct 2014 - University of Twente develops new chip for testing medicines UT doctoral degree candidate Verena Stimberg has developed a chip that can improve research into diseases, medicines and the possible toxicity of nanoparticles. The chip contains a man-made version of a cell membrane, on which you can examine diseases where ion channels in cell membranes play a role. With the chip you can test drugs against cystic fibrosis or conduct research into diseases such as Parkinson's, cancer, depression, epilepsy, multiple sclerosis and diabetes. The chip means that fewer trials on animals and people will probably be required in the future. Stimberg conducted her research within the MIRA and MESA+ research institutes at the University of Twente. 21 Oct 2014 - BP invests 2 million in fundamental research UT In the next five years, BP will invest two million euros in fundamental research by the department of Physics of Complex Fluids of  the UT research institute MESA+. The purpose of the research is to obtain a better understanding of how oil is attached to the porous bedrock of an oil field at the molecular level. Application of this knowledge ought to make it possible to extract increased quantities of oil from existing fields.