Feeds

Lab-on-a-chip takes Eureka prize

Sniffing out the sarin

Secure remote control for conventional and virtual desktops

A chip-sized lab designed to detect chemicals in small traces was among the Eureka prize-winners announced last night (August 28).

The work, led by CSIRO materials scientist Dr Yonggang Zhu, puts all of the components of a test lab into a one-square-centimeter device: channels, mixers, diffusion chambers, electrodes, pumps and valves – along with the electronics needed to deliver the result.

The prize was specifically awarded for prototypes that Dr Zhu’s group developed, demonstrating a lab-on-a-chip able to detect agents like sarin, soman, tabun and VX, “as well as their degradation products”. The detector can work from swabs, water, or soil samples, and deliver a result in about 30 seconds.

Not surprisingly, Dr Zhu’s $AU10,000 prize was for “Outstanding Science in Support of Defence or National Security”, and was sponsored by Australia’s Defence Science & Technology Organization.

As well as providing quick field analysis of samples, the idea of a disposable chip-sized analysis means there’s less chance for samples to cross-contaminate.

"Professor Zhu has developed a reliable and sensitive detection device that can provide virtually immediate, on-the-spot results with the same accuracy as a fully staffed analytical laboratory. There are no other commercially available instruments able to do this. Current devices are difficult to use, unable to be deployed in the field, and have too high a rate of false alarms," says Frank Howarth, Director of the Australian Museum in a statement.

There’s a 2010 presentation from Dr Zhu at Docstock which describes the work in detail.

The full list of winners can be found here. ®

Next gen security for virtualised datacentres

More from The Register

next story
Boffins attempt to prove the UNIVERSE IS JUST A HOLOGRAM
Is this the real life? Is this just fantasy?
Our LOHAN spaceplane ballocket Kickstarter climbs through £8000
Through 25 per cent but more is needed: Get your UNIQUE rewards!
NASA to reformat Opportunity rover's memory from 125 million miles away
Interplanetary admins will back up data and get to work
LOHAN tunes into ultra long range radio
And verily, Vultures shall speak status unto distant receivers
SpaceX prototype rocket EXPLODES over Texas. 'Tricky' biz, says Elon Musk
No injuries or near injuries. Flight stayed in designated area
Galileo, Galileo! Galileo, Galileo! Galileo fit to go. Magnifico
I'm just a poor boy, nobody loves me. But at least I can find my way with ESA GPS by 2017
EOS, Lockheed to track space junk from Oz
WA facility gets laser-eyes out of the fog
prev story

Whitepapers

5 things you didn’t know about cloud backup
IT departments are embracing cloud backup, but there’s a lot you need to know before choosing a service provider. Learn all the critical things you need to know.
Implementing global e-invoicing with guaranteed legal certainty
Explaining the role local tax compliance plays in successful supply chain management and e-business and how leading global brands are addressing this.
Backing up Big Data
Solving backup challenges and “protect everything from everywhere,” as we move into the era of big data management and the adoption of BYOD.
Consolidation: The Foundation for IT Business Transformation
In this whitepaper learn how effective consolidation of IT and business resources can enable multiple, meaningful business benefits.
High Performance for All
While HPC is not new, it has traditionally been seen as a specialist area – is it now geared up to meet more mainstream requirements?