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IMT 11-2022 Bachelor- or Master Thesis: Characterization of motility in microorganisms on substrates using MEMS tools


Institut für Mikrostrukturtechnik (IMT)


Cyanobacteria is one of the most important and oldest class of bacteria on earth. Additionally, they have very interesting characteristics and exhibit intriguing behavior. More specifically, Cyanobacteria can produce their own food through photosynthesis and move in response to light – behavior which is called phototaxis.

The study of phototaxis of cyanobacteria is the topic of the present project. You will be using the tool-set specific to lab on a chip (LOC) and microfluidic devices in order to investigate phototaxis of cyanobacteria within microfluidic chips. Furthermore, you will be trained in MEMS-based characterization techniques in order to subsequently characterize the bacterial cells, their movement on various substrates and in the end, record the overall response of cell motility as a function of different surface properties.

The specific tasks within the project will be:

  • training on MEMS characterization techniques such as contact angle measurements, atomic force microscopy (AFM), Zeta potential measurement and white light Interferometry;
  • cell culture, cell handling and testing on a Microscopic setup;
  • statistical analysis of the data;

You will be integrated in a larger team within the SPA-Lab. Within this project, you will use the infrastructure existent at the Institute of Microstructure Technology (IMT), i.e., microfabrication facilities and micro-characterization equipment. This is a complete project, offering the possibility to fabricate and test the devices, giving you the opportunity to co-author conference and/or journal publications.


by appointment

Persönliche Qualifikation

  • Field of study: Mechanical/electrical/chemical engineering, Bioingenieurwesen, Chemieingenieurwesen, Biotechnologie
  • good academic record (marks); curious about various aspects of science;
  • enthusiastic to work in a multidisciplinary environment;
  • independent thinker and team player;
  • in particular: strong interest in Microbiology, microfluidics, BioMEMS, microsystems technologies for bio-medical applications, biophotonics;
  • knowledge in microsystems/microfabrication/microfluidics is desirable.

Contract duration

6-9 months

Contact person in line-management

For further information, please contact Dr. Vlad Badilita, phone +49 721 608-29315, email: or

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Ausschreibungsnummer: IMT 11-2022

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