Zoek in de site...


Within our group, we are always looking for interested students that want to do an internship with us. Have a look at our research pages to get an idea of the projects you can work on during an internship. We accept students from numerous backgrounds, ranging from physics to chemistry, or (medical) biology. For more information, you can contact dr. Simona Cristescu (group leader).

Currently, we are specifically looking for students for the following projects:

Microcantilevers for chemical detection

Miniaturized sensors have been in particular interest in the recent years, thanks to the advancement of technology in miniaturization of optical, electrical and mechanical systems.

One of the popular miniaturized platforms for sensing is a microcantilever (MCL). A MCL is a miniaturized beam constrained at one end with the other end extending freely outwards. An external stimulus causes the MCL to bend or oscillate in a static or a dynamic mode, respectively. In the static mode, the displacement of the MCL due to a load or intrinsic stress generated on or within the MCL is measured. In the dynamic mode, an external actuation (piezoelectric, magnetic, or electrostatic actuator) causes the MCL to oscillate at its natural (resonant) frequency. Any change in the load or mass of the MCL results in a change in frequency that is subsequently measured.


To allow chemical sensing, the MCL surface is coated with a probe coating (functionalized surface). Specific analytes are then adsorbed by specific coatings. The amount of target material is measured by monitoring a change in the MCL’s natural frequency. For example, as more target analyte attaches to the surfaces, the MCL gain mass and its resonant frequency decreases. The higher the frequency shift, the greater the amount of accumulated mass. The data is then processed and the concentration of analyte is determined.

For this project, we are looking for an enthusiastic Msc student from Physics/ Physical Chemistry/ Science/ who likes to work in the lab. in testing and validation of a basic MCL sensor in a proof-of-principle experiment. This includes the external oscillation of a MCL with an activated surface with and without adsorbing a specific analyte. The main goal is to gain insights in how the MCL technology works for biosensing (i.e. detection of relevant biomarkers (in the gas or liquid phase) and potentially bacteria and viruses).

In our group we have a starting kit with several MCLs from commercial suppliers and simple electrical readouts. You will do this research at the Life Science Trace Detection Laboratory (TDLab, www.ru.nl/TDLab), Dept of Analytical Chemistry & Chemometrics (IMM, FNWI). This research is a collaboration between the TDLab and the Saxion Hogeschool (Enshede, Applied Nanotechnology).

If you are interested, please contact: dr. Amir Khodabakhsh (Amir.Khodabakhsh@ru.nl)