How to evolve chemical sensors from a university laboratory to the industrial world for Electronic Nose applications

Giorgio Sberveglieri Giorgio Sberveglieri University of Brescia, Italy

Giorgio Sberveglieri

Department of Information Engineering, University of Brescia, Italy

Nano Sensor Systems srl


Low power consumption and mobile gas sensing devices are increasingly in demand for a huge number of possible applications both in the form of a single selective sensor and more as an array of sensors in the Electronic Nose configuration.

These modern electronic instruments are used both to recognize different odors such as the human olfactory, but they are much more suitable and sought after for recognizing problems such as bacterial contamination of food products that can occur both on an industrial and domestic level.

Nowadays we are faced with new generations of ENs both for the part of sensors of the MOS type, which in my opinion are among the most stable and economical to form sensor arrays, and for the very important application of Artificial Intelligence in data processing of the sensor array. Research studies on sensors have had an enormous increase in recent years and obtained excellent results at the academic and industrial levels.

In the past, I developed and fabricated these types of high-performance MOS sensors in the SENSOR laboratory at the University of Brescia, and then I co-founded the spin-off at the University of Brescia Nano Sensor Systems on these bases. But bringing these to industrial production levels required significant improvements and important modifications to have integrated sensors, smart connections, and mobile devices.

In my talk, I will present the important changes and developments required for the large-scale production of sensors. Furthermore, I will show our important achievements in the testing of EN devices for practical applications.
I will summarize the research activities with some attention to the future of ENs by considering new concepts of chemical sensors to obtain miniaturized sensing systems and make them portable and at the same time robust.


Giorgio Sberveglieri. After graduating in Physics with Laude from the University of Parma, he began his research by studying and producing new types of thin-film solar cells at the same University. His research and development activity has always been focused on Applied Physics and the development of functional materials.
In 1987 he moved to the University of Brescia, shifting his activity to semiconductor oxide thin film gas sensors by developing a new growth technique called RGTO, still mentioned in some important texts and studied in several international laboratories. From 2002 he began to carry out research on nanowire gas sensors, again using semiconductor metal oxides, publishing the first paper on this important topic, opening a path followed by many colleagues for the development of high-performance gas sensors.
Lately he has continued the study of nanowire sensors of metal oxides optimizing the preparation parameters and developing new unconventional preparation techniques. In order to obtain greater selectivity and industrial applicability of the nano-sensors, he has developed an Electronic Nose prototype for applications in the field of food matrix quality, safety and environmental pollution determination. In 2018 he was awarded the title of Professor Emeritus by the Minister of Education, University and Research.
In 2016 he was one of the co-founders of the innovative start-up NANO SENSOR SYSTEMS SRL and took over the Presidency and Legal Representative. He has published over 500 articles in international peer-reviewed journals. He obtained (source - Google Scholar) 20,000 citations and has an h-index of 73.

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