Bachelor Thesis / Master Thesis / Diplomarbeit

Nanofluidic “artificial synapses” for neurotransmitter-based neuroprosthetics

NMI has a long history of developing technology for applications in neuroscience and brain-machine interfaces, based on microelectrode arrays for recording and stimulation of neuronal signals.

The goal of this project is to develop an artificial synapse, based on synthetic voltage-gated ion channels. These channels will be integrated into microfluidic systems for direct chemical stimulation of neurons. This position will involve the characterisation and optimization of these artificial ion channels to achieve reliable chemical release similar to biological neurons.

Artificial ion channels are fabricated by focused ion beam milling of nanopores. Transport and gating properties of the channels are modified by chemical functionalization of nanopore surfaces. Experience with electroanalytical methods (impedance spectroscopy, voltage–current measurements), fluorescence microscopy, or focused ion beam and electron beam microscopy would be helpful but is not necessary.

We offer:

  • a scientifically challenging topic with promising potential for future applications
  • cooperation in an interdisciplinary team and a stimulating scientific environment
  • training and support in all phases of the project


You should be:

  • a student of physics, chemistry, or micro/nanotechnology
  • willing to independently learn and apply new concepts
  • capable of analytical thinking, excellent technical skills, and thorough documentation



Dr. Martin Stelzle

Email:, Tel. 07121 51530-75 

NMI, AG BioMEMS & Sensorik,  Markwiesenstr. 55, 72770 Reutlingen