Neus Sabaté

Institute of Microelectronics of Barcelona - Centre Nacional de Microelectrònica

Engineering Sciences

I obtained my Degree in Physics in 1998 at the University of Barcelona (UB). After that, I joined UB Electronics Dep. to develop ionizing radiation detectors. After that I stayed at the LAAS-CNRS in Toulouse, where I discovered my passion for silicon-based microsystems (MEMS) technologies. In 1999, I started my PhD at the Microelectronics Institute of Barcelona (CSIC) where I developed silicon-based flow and gas sensors for industrial applications. After the obtaining of my PhD, in 2004 I joined the IZM Fraunhofer in Berlin where I played a key role in the development of a new technique for stress measurements in thin films for the microelectronics industry. In 2006 I started a research line in silicon microfabricated fuel cells at IMB-CSIC that has evolved until the biodegradable electrochemical power sources I develop today. In 2015 I founded the spin-off Fuelium, aimed to commercialize disposable paper batteries for single use applications.

Research interests

Since 2006, I have focused on the development of microfuel cells, with the final goal of integrating them within microdevices requiring power autonomy. After many years of development using silicon-related technologies I decided to approach printed electronics technology that allows to build devices entirely made of polymer-based and paper materials at a very competitive cost. The main goal of my research line is to obtain single-use electrochemical power sources that can provide with power autonomy the new generation of paper-based lab-on-a-chip devices while being environmentally friendly. I am highly motivated in transferring the devices I create to the "real world" in order to contribute to the enhancement of the industrial local ecosystem.

Selected publications

- Ibrahim OA, Alday P, Sabate N, Esquivel JP & Kjeang E 2017, 'Evaluation of Redox Chemistries for Single-Use Biodegradable Capillary Flow Batteries', Journal Of The Electrochemical Society, 64, 12, A2448 - A2456.

- Esquivel JP, Alday P, Ibrahim OA, Fernández B, Kjeang E & Sabaté N 2017, ‘A Metal-Free and Biotically Degradable Battery for Portable Single-Use Applications’, Advanced Energy Materials, Vol. 7, 1700275.

- Esquivel JP, Buser JR, Lim CW, Domínguez C, Rojas S, Yager P & Sabaté N 2017, 'Single-use paper-based hydrogen fuel cells for point-of-care diagnostic applications', Journal of Power Sources, Vol. 342, pp. 442-451.

- González-Guerrero MJ, del Campo FJ, Esquivel JP, Leech D & Sabaté N 2017, ‘Paper-based microfluidic biofuel cell operating under glucose concentrations within physiological range’, Biosensors and Bioelectronics, Vol. 90, pp. 475–480.

Selected research activities

Invited Talks

Single-use paper fuel cells and batteries for disposable Point-of-Care devices, Smart Systems Integration Conference, March 2017, Cork (Ireland)

Paper-based fuel cells for autonomous screening tests, VIII International Congress on Analytical Nanoscience and Nanotechnology, July 2017, Barcelona

Barcelona on the Frontiers of Science, Barcelona Global General Assembly, July 2017, Barcelona

Dissemination Activities

Challenges to enhance Barcelona start-up ecosystem – Round table at the 2nd Edition of the ACCIO Barcelona & Catalonia Start-up Hub, October 2017, Auditori Camp Nou, Barcelona

Technology Transfer Activities

In November 2017, my spin-off FUELIUM - that develops paper batteries for in-vitro diagnostic devices – was granted with Phase I of SME Instrument.