Terahertz spectroscopy for pharmaceutical applications

Requirements: Successfully completed undergraduate studies in engineering physics, electrical engineering or a related area, and at least earned 45 credits in the master´s program. Previous experience in microwave measurements is of great advantage.
Background: A crucial part of the pharmaceutical manufacture process to ensure speed, effectiveness and accuracy is the characterisation of processes and products (for example density variations, coating thickness and moisture content). The vast majority of the current approaches to characterise pharmaceutical products involve off-line destructive non-efficient techniques.
Sandwiched between the visible light and radio waves, the sub-millimetre wave radiation (0.1-1 mm) or terahertz wave radiation has a great potential for measuring critical properties of pharmaceutical systems. It provides better resolution than microwaves with higher penetration depth than current optical techniques and is highly sensitive to moister content.
Experimental setup with Vector Network AnalyzerWe are looking for a student to develop and implement terahertz techniques to characterise pharmaceutical products. The specific goals of this thesis it to use a vector network analyser (VNA) up to 1.5 THz (Fig. 1) to study the frequency dependence of the density and moisture content of compact dry powder systems, and to explore the possibilities of using terahertz technology for characterise soft capsules and coated systems.
This master thesis project is a collaboration between the Terahertz and Millimetre Wave Laboratory, Department of Microtechnology and Nanoscience and AstraZeneca.
Figure: Experimental setup with Vector Network Analyzer
The project consists of:   
  • Theoretical study and literature review
  • S- parameter characterisation of the samples up to 1.3 THz
  • De-embedding techniques
  • Models for the sample parameters subtraction
Lien Nguyen (Lien.Nguyen@astrazeneca.com) AstraZeneca R&D Gothenburg
Helena Rodilla (rodilla@chalmers.se) Terahertz and Millimetre Wave Laboratory, MC2, Chalmers
Feel free to contact us for more information!

Published: Fri 11 Nov 2016.