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Cheng Research Group receives Trask Funding


Ji-Xin Cheng

Professor Ji-Xin Cheng is receiving $50,000 through the Trask Innovation Fund to help commercialize "Fast Spectroscopy Imaging by Parallel-detection of Stimulated Raman Scattering," a technology that will allow researchers, clinicians or pathologists to look at live biological samples, without labeling, in real-time.

The Amy Instrumentation Facility collaborated on the project and built the initial resonant detector. “When that was successful, the Cheng Research Group then wanted to try an array of such detectors and we designed a system for them around a linear photodiode array chip (35 diodes) they provided,” said Rob Oglesbee, a senior instrument specialist in the Amy Facility.

The linear photodiode array was built in stages: first four channels, then eight, and sixteen. “At each stage we encountered new problems like noise, cross-talk, power consumption,” Oglesbee explained.

Rob Oglesbee

The team is currently modifying the box to contain 32 channels. Oglesbee was involved in the overall system design, with Amy Facility instrumentation technician Cathy McIntyre developing board layouts and assisting with the box-box cabling design.

Cathy McIntyre

A patent has been filed on the array technique and the team hopes to further miniaturize the system by incorporating the resonant detection onto silicon as a single array/amplifier chip.

The Purdue Research Foundation-managed Trask Innovation Fund is a development program to assist faculty and staff whose discoveries are being commercialized through the Purdue Office of Technology Commercialization.

Dan Hasler, president of Purdue Research Foundation and chief entrepreneurial officer at Purdue University, said the university's culture of innovation impacts the globe.

"Faculty, staff and students and their dedication to improving the world are at the center of Purdue's environment of innovation," he said. "The researchers who earned Trask Innovation Fund awards are developing work that represents just a fraction of the life-changing ideas from Purdue that could lead to longer, healthier, happier and more productive lives."

(Photo: The box, currently under construction, houses the 32 amplifiers that are attached to a Resonant Photodiode Array for "Fast Spectroscopy Imaging by Parallel-detection of Stimulated Raman Scattering," built by Cathy McIntyre of the Amy Instrumentation Facility.)


Elizabeth Hart-Wells, Office of Technology Commercialization

Dr. R. Michael Everly, Director, Amy Instrumentation Facility

Press release:

Five Purdue innovations receive more than $200,000 from Trask Innovation Fund