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Unit information: Biosensors in 2018/19

Please note: It is possible that the information shown for future academic years may change due to developments in the relevant academic field. Optional unit availability varies depending on both staffing and student choice.

Unit name Biosensors
Unit code EENGM0005
Credit points 10
Level of study M/7
Teaching block(s) Teaching Block 2 (weeks 13 - 24)
Unit director Professor. Kiely
Open unit status Not open

Undergraduate degree in Engineering



School/department Department of Electrical & Electronic Engineering
Faculty Faculty of Engineering


The unit focusses on the typical aspects of biomedical sensing and stimulation and its instrumentation. A major part of the course is dedicated to the sensors and their specific requirements for use in biomedical applications.

Outline syllabus:

Sensors for biomedical applications: Sensor principles and transducers phenomena

Mechanical sensors: strain sensing, pressure sensors, accelerometers

Silicon micromachining techniques, Temperature, photo and magnetic sensors

Biochemical sensors: dissolved oxygen, glucose, ureum;

Bioelectric potentials and stimulation techniques: Biopotentials: ECG, EMG, EEG;

Optical sensors: Optical fiber, absorption measurement, fluorescence measurement, bioluminescence and chemiluminescence's, optical sensor for pH, pO2 and pCO2 measurement.

Measurement techniques, the right leg drive, Stimulation principles, Biomedical stimulation: nerves, muscles, cochlea, heart;

Implantable electronic systems: Biotelemetry: specific requirements, Examples of active and passive telemetry systems.

Intended learning outcomes

Students should be able to:-

1. Explain the working principles of the various types of biosensors studied.

2. Describe the construction of biosensors.

3. Discuss the in vitro and in vivo operation and application of biosensors.

4. List the problems likely to be faced in biosensor construction such as biocompatibility and biomaterials used, and future application of biosensors.

5. Test and analyse lab experiment results to design a biosensor.

Teaching details

Lectures and laboratory practicals

Assessment Details

Coursework (10%): Written report based on laboratory experiments (ILO 5)

Terminal Exam (90%): 2 hour written paper (ILOs 1-4)

Reading and References

Brian R. Eggins: "Biosensors: An Introduction," John Wiley & Son, 1997.

Donald G. Buerk: "Biosensors: Theory and Applications," CRC Press, 1995.