Materials Research Science and Engineering Center
Development of a Microcalorimeter
Needleman and Vlassak

Needleman and Vlassak are developing a calorimeter that is designed to be sufficiently sensitive to resolve the metabolic rate of a single mammalian cell. They developed a thermopile that achieves pico-Watt sensitivity, which should be sufficient for the project. Calorimeter sensors with this level of sensitivity have not been developed. He has created two different designs: a design with four reference cells for isothermal measurements (left) and a design with one reference for less sensitive isothermal measurements and scanning measurements (right). They are now optimizing the fabrication process to manufacture the devices.

Harvard MRSEC (DMR-1420570)