MESA+ University of Twente
The BIOS Lab-on-a-chip group

Radio Antenna Technology for online fingerprinting of water




In drinking water, surface water, industrial water and waste water, a very large number of toxic components can be present at low concentration. To safeguard water quality and to minimize effects of undesired components on our environment, early detection of toxic components in water is vital. However, detection of the huge number of undesired components in water is very expensive, labor intensive an off line. Therefore, a fingerprint method to track changes of the water quality will be a helpful tool as an early warning system that the water may contain undesired components.

We aim to develop an on-line device that monitors the (composition of) water continuously. The sensing element in our device is the fluidic analog of a coax cable containing an inner and (grounded) outer conductor (inset Fig. 1).

Figure 1. The experimental set-up with the fluidic coax analog positioned in between the transmitter and receiver. The inset shows a solid state coax cable.

The technique may turn useful for the fingerprinting of water, milk or other products from the diary industry and, for instance, the characterization of blood.