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Russian scientists have invented a micro motor for instant medical analyzes

Members of the Yaroslavl branch of the Physical and Technical Institute of the Russian Academy of Sciences and Yaroslavl State University have developed a micro motor that helps to get the results of medical tests almost instantly. The miniaturization of the sensors allows for fast and cheap measurements.
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Scientists from Yaroslavl have built an actuator — a motor that converts electrical energy into a mechanical motion. The device developed by the scientists makes use of the combustion of hydrogen and oxygen in nanobubbles. The actuator is filled with salted water and when electrical current goes through the mixture, bubbles of gas (a mixture of hydrogen and oxygen) are formed, which push the membrane upward. The membrane plays the same role as the piston of the internal combustion engine in a car. After the current is cut off, oxygen and hydrogen react to form water, and the membrane goes down again.

The motor has a diameter of a half-millimeter and operates at a frequency of 1−2 thousand cycles per second. The device is suitable as an engine for autonomous systems for targeted drug delivery (insulin), the scientists believe. It is by order of magnitude smaller than existing counterparts and runs on biocompatible materials. The tiny size of the engine will allow for development of measuring tools, which require just a small amount of liquid for analysis.

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