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Professor Xize Niu PhD

Professor of Biosensing and Microengineering, Director of Research

Professor Xize Niu's photo

Professor Xize Niu is Professor of Biosensing and Microengineering within Engineering and Physical Sciences at the University of Southampton.

Xize is a Fellow of the Higher Education Academy. His group is currently focused on solving scientific and engineering challenges in wearable/portable sensors for healthcare and environmental applications, especially for real time and continuous monitoring of chemical variations in body and environmental fluids. The key research areas related are microfluidics, lab-on-a-chip, analytical chemistry and mechatronics.

There are openings in his group for PhD studies and postdoctoral research (wearable healthcare sensor, or environmental sensor). Applications are welcome.

Research interests

Professor Niu is interested in engineering microfluidic devices for bio- analytical applications, such as sampling and handling of nanolitre liquid samples, and performing high throughput and in situ analysis. Consequently his research covers:

  • Biosensors and wearable technologies;
  • Biomarker analysis and therapeutic drug monitoring;
  • Microfluidics and lab-on-a-chip;
  • Microfabrication and microengineering;
  • Fluid mechanics, multiphase phase flows and droplets.

He likes to cover a project from the fundamental science through to application and product. He has applied 7 patents, formed 2 spin-out companies, and a few of his inventions have been commercialised to products.

Group members

Dr. Bingyuan Liu (Research Fellow)
Wahida Bhuiyan (PhD student)
Sel Gultekin  (PhD student)
Liam Carter (PhD student)
James Lunn (PhD student)

Water Sensor
Water Sensor
Wearable Sensor
Wearable Sensor

Research group

Mechatronics Engineering Group

Affiliate research group

Bioengineering Science

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FEEG1004-29853  Electrical and Electronics Systems
ESM6039-32860-20-21 Introduction to Advanced Mechanical Engineering Science (AMES)
FEEG3003-32772  Individual Project
FEEG6013-32909-20-21 Group Design Project

Droplet Microfluidics

Droplets are defined here as water droplets dispersed in an immiscible oil phase or oil droplets dispersed in water. These droplets are contained and motivated through microfluidic conduits having dimensions most easily measured in microns. Droplets microfluidics is emerging as a reliable engineering tool for performing biological operations such as analyte encapsulation, sampling, metering, dilution, reaction, separation and detection.

In Niu’s lab, we are interested in studying droplet generation-on-demand. These studies have led to several publications and two patents, one for robotic droplet generation for lab usages that has been commercialised (DropixTM), and the latest one for sampling droplets from real environments such as body or environmental fluids, which has the potential to be developed into various healthcare and diagnostic devices or environmental sensors.

We are also interested in analysing biochemical molecules with droplet interfaced electrophoresis separation, liquid chromatography and mass spectrometry, or sensitive assays within droplets. For example we have recently developed droplet interfaced parallel separations that can incorporate hundreds of droplets and separation channels onto a single chip, enhancing analytical throughput and reducing sample consumption.

Novel droplet operation units and toolkit are also within our research interests. We have developed microfluidic chips for droplet merging, dilution and sorting etc. (and some of the chips have been commercialised).

Separation of biomolecules
Separation of biomolecules
Droplet on demand
Droplet on demand
Droplet trapping and merging
Droplet trapping and merging
Droplet dilution
Droplet dilution
Professor Xize Niu
Engineering, University of Southampton, Highfield, Southampton. SO17 1BJ United Kingdom


Room Number : 7/5013

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