Silicon Science Award 2021 for Nadja Steinke

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Congratulations to Nadja Steinke on the Silicon Science Award 2021! With her dissertation entitled “Plasmonic sensor for the on-site detection of diclofenac molecules” she convinced the jury. The award ceremony takes place on December 8, 2021 during the 15th Dresden Sensor Symposium.

© Fraunhofer IKTS
Dr. Nadja Steinke, with her supervisors Prof. Gerald Gerlach (back left) and Prof. Thomas Härtling, is pleased to receive the Silicon Science Award 2021 for her dissertation "Plasmonic sensor for the on-site detection of diclofenac molecules".

In her work, Ms. Steinke deals with the development of a plasmonic sensor system for the detection of drug residues, such as diclofenac in wastewater. A new feature of her plasmonic sensor is that the trace substance analysis can be carried out on-site. For this purpose, a sensor chip was developed that is based on a nanostructured metallic sensor surface. Selected substances can specifically bind to it and thus change the optical properties of the sensor surface. An optoelectronic detection system permanently interrogates the surface. In this way, any change in the optical behavior, e.g. in the transmission signal, is registered and thus reveals the presence of a trace substance. In the future, this online-capable trace substance analysis can directly monitor compliance with limit values in wastewater treatment plants and help to make wastewater treatment more efficient.

In the Optical Test Methods and Nanosensors working group at the Fraunhofer Institute for Ceramic Technologies and Systems IKTS, Nadja Steinke is working with industrial partners on the introduction of sensor technology in wastewater treatment and other process waters.

The Silicon Science Award is presented by CiS e.V. and CiS Forschungsinstitut für Mikrosensorik GmbH to young researchers in the field of microsystems technology.