Binary Research Group

Dr. Chen received his Ph.D. from the University of Maryland, USA in 1998. The BINARY lab (Biology, Information science and Nanotechnology Applications and Research laboratorY) was founded in Spring 2003. The mission is to provide a cross-disciplinary research environment for exploring new nanoscale device & circuit designs and nanotechnology for bio-medical applications. Our primary research focuses include:

  1. Developing a pulsed-wave technology platform to stimulate cell growth (with the applications in cell therapy, tissue engineering, mental health and antibody productions), and microorganism growth (with the applications in increasing renewable biofuel /algal oil, antibiotics, omega-3, and wine/beverage productions);
  2. Building functional nanomaterials for water filtration (removing microorganisms, organic chemicals and heavy metals), gene transformation of agricultural products, targeted cancer imaging and treatment, gene/peptide/microRNA delivery (especially across the blood-brain-barrier);
  3. Designing portable impedance-based point-of-care devices for detecting metabolic biomarkers, monitoring environmental toxins, sensing plant infections at an earlier stage, and screening pathogens for food safety.

The University of Alberta is home to cutting edge facilities such as the National Institute for Nanotechnology, as well as having the interdisciplinary expertise to be an epicentre for new waves of innovation in Biomedical Engineering. The University of Alberta was ranked 46th in the world for the impact of its engineering publications.


IEEE TBioCAS Associate Editor Certificate of Appreciation (sent on behalf of TBioCAS EiC, Mohamad Sawan)    (19/04/2017)

From: Brooke Johnson
Date: Monday, April 10, 2017 at 9:24 AM
To: Jie Chen
Cc: Brittian Parkinson
Subject: IEEE TBioCAS Associate Editor Certificate of Appreciation (sent on behalf of TBioCAS EiC, Mohamad Sawan) Dear Jie Chen, We appreciate your dedicated service as an Associate Editor for the IEEE Transactions on Biomedical Circuits and Systems. In recognition of your time and efforts, please find a Certificate of Appreciation attached below. If you'd prefer to have a physical copy of this certificate, please respond to this email with your full mailing address. --
Best regards,
Brooke Johnson
Conference Catalysts, LLC

It is a great honour for me to learn a particular piece of history    (15/03/2017)

During my recent trip to 8th IEEE Latin American Symposium on Circuits and System, Argentina 2017, I met my schoolmate (Dr. Tian Zhou) from Fudan University, Shanghai, China; Both Dr. Zhou and I had the same M.Sc. supervisor (Dr. Pushan Tang) in Fudan University. Dr. Zhou informed me that our supervisor’s advisor, Dr. Fushan Wang (王福山), is a student of the Nobel Prize winner in Physics (1932) Dr. Werner Heisenberg, who is a founder of Quantum Mechanism. Dr. Niles Bohr (Nobel Prize 1922) wrote a recommendation letter for Dr. Fusah Wang to Dr. Heisenberg. It a great honor for me to learn this piece of history.  

Jie Chen was invited to give a keynote talk at the IEEE Latin American Symposium on Circuits and Systems    (25/02/2017)

Jie Chen was invited to give a keynote talk "Designing and micro/nano-fabricating portable impedance-based point-of-care biosensors" and a tutorial talk "Engineering of Nanobiotechnological Systems" at 8th IEEE Latin American Symposium on Circuits and Systems / Bariloche, Argentina (Feb. 20-23, 2017)

“Algal Cell Response to Pulsed Waved Stimulation and Its Application to Increase Algal Lipid Production” was published in Scientific Reports.     (12/02/2017)

Generating renewable energy while sequestering CO2 using algae has recently attracted significant research attention, mostly directing towards biological methods such as systems biology, genetic engineering and bio-refining for optimizing algae strains. Other approaches focus on chemical screening to adjust culture conditions or culture media. We report for the first time the physiological changes of algal cells in response to a novel form of mechanical stimulation, or a pulsed wave at the frequency of 1.5 MHz and the duty cycle of 20%. We studied how the pulsed wave can further increase algal lipid production on top of existing biological and chemical methods. Two commonly used algal strains, fresh-water Chlorella vulgaris and seawater Tetraselmis chuii, were selected. We have performed the tests in shake flasks and 1 L spinner-flask bioreactors. Conventional Gravimetric measurements show that up to 20% increase for algal lipid could be achieved after 8 days of stimulation. The total electricity cost needed for the stimulations in a one-liter bioreactor is only one-tenth of a US penny. Gas liquid chromatography shows that the fatty acid composition remains unchanged after pulsed-wave stimulation. Scanning electron microscope results also suggest that pulsed wave stimulation induces shear stress and thus increases algal lipid production. (Full Paper)

A brief autobiography about Dr. Chen was published by Fudan University Alumni Magazine    (13/01/2017)

 A brief autobiography about Dr. Chen was published by Fudan University Alumni Magazine

Paper citation     (17/12/2016)

According to the Google Scholar (;;user=kLA9_-8AAAAJ), my H-index and i10-index are 27 and 59, respectively, as of December 2016.

Invited speaker at IEEE-NIH 2016 Special Topics Conference on Healthcare Innovations and Point-of-Care Technologies    (01/12/2016)

Dr. Jie Chen was invited to give a talk "Desinging and Micro-nano-fabircating Portable Impedance-based Point-of-Care Biosensors" at IEEE-NIH 2016 Special Topics Conference on Healthcare Innovations and Point-of-Care Technologies, Cancun, Mexico, Nov. 11-19 (

"Three-Dimensional Coating of Porous Activated Carbons with Silver Nanoparticles and its Scale-up Design for Plant Disease Management in Greenhouses" was accepted by Journal of Plant Pathology & Microbiology    (10/11/2016)

Abstract: Greenhouse vegetable production is significantly impacted by pathogens that cause diseases to the roots of plants. These diseases are increasingly problematic in hydroponic vegetable production. Standard commercial practices in modern vegetable production facilities reuse the nutrient solution to reduce costs, or use dugout water for greenhouse irrigation in rural areas. This practice of recycling water may introduce or spread pathogens. Once pathogens contaminate water systems, they can spread quickly and cause dramatic losses to yield. Water filters have been used, but do not effectively kill fungi and bacteria. Therefore, better water treatment solutions are urgently needed to manage plant disease, especially for hydroponically grown vegetables. Numerous studies have demonstrated the efficacy of silver ion (Ag+) and silver-based compounds for disinfection of a wide range of harmful microorganisms. In this article, we present a new filter material based on three-dimensional (3D) silver nanoparticle (AgNP)-coated substrates for water treatment. We prepared AgNP-coated active carbon materials and tested their antimicrobial efficacy against phytopathogenic bacterial and fungal spores, such as Pseudomonas sp., and Fusarium sp. We then conducted large-scale tests in a dynamic flow setting and evaluated the effect of the filter on Pythium root rot control of hydroponically grown cucumbers. Results indicated that killing efficiencies of 3D coating were grea [ ... ]

Received the first prize award in "2016 Innobay" Innovation International Competition     (23/10/2016)

Our impedance-based biosensor design received the first-prize award in "2016 InnoBay" international innovation competition. There are over 300 projects participated in this competition. 26 finalists were seletected. After final oral presentation, we received the first prize on Oct. 14, 2016 in Zhejian Ningbo, China. 第五届杭州湾论坛举行 聚焦创新驱动下的沪甬联动发展 中国宁波网10月14日讯(记者 黄程) 日前,“上海2040城市规划”公布,将宁波杭州湾新区纳入上海大都市圈规划;不谋而合的是,今年7月,宁波 杭州湾新区全面启动沪甬合作示范区建设,并出台《全方位接轨上海三年行动计划》,在此背景下,10月14日下午,以“创新驱动下的沪甬双城联动 发展”为主题的2016第五届杭州湾论坛在宁波杭州湾新区举行,论坛从商业文明、政策环境、企业转型、创新合作、全球视野等多个角度切入,邀请 政坛要人、专家学者、知名企业家以及高新创业企业代表进行多方交流,为新区区域发展和沪甬两地城市的联动发展激荡智慧风暴、献计献策。    宁波杭州湾新区管委会主任、党工委副书记俞雷,中科院院士、复旦大学副校长、复旦大学宁波研究院院长金力在论坛开幕仪式上致辞。复旦大 学历史系教授、《百家讲坛》著名主讲人钱文忠,宁波沁园集团有限公司董事长兼总经理叶建荣,上海股 [ ... ]

QS and Times worldwide university ranking    (01/10/2016)

University of Alberta was ranked 96 according to QS (Quacquarelli Symonds) worldwide Rankings 2015 Canada Top Universities in 2015 University Location QS (Quacquarelli Symonds) World Rankings 2015 McGill University Montreal 25 University of Toronto Toronto 34 University of British Columbia Vancouver 50 University of Alberta Edmonton 96 University of Alberta was ranked 107 according to Times Higher Education worldwide Rankings 2015 Canada Top Universities in 2015 University Location QS (Quacquarelli Symonds) World Rankings 2015 University of Toronto Toronto 22 University of British Columbia Vancouver =36 McGill University Montreal 42 University of Alberta Edmonton 107

A journal paper was accepted by Biomedical Physics & Engineering Express    (05/09/2016)

A co-authored paper "A monochromatic x-ray irradiation system for in vitro studies at synchrotron beamlines", M. Niestroj, B. Bewer, D. Mousseau, D. Chapman, J. Chen and J. Hormes was accepted by Biomedical Physics & Engineering Express. Abstract: The use of synchrotron light in radiobiological keV x-ray in vitro studies has been accompanied by compromises on culture conditions and sample handling procedures. The presented monochromatic x-ray system bridges the gap between synchrotron science and cell biology by facilitating the irradiation of adherent cells uninterruptedly maintained under cell type-specific conditions throughout the entire experiment. The system for horizontal irradiations consists of a single crystal Laue monochromator, a beam monitor, and a scanning sample stage. As implemented at the BMIT-BM beamline, the system enables homogeneous cell culture irradiations with intense and purely monochromatic x-ray beams (10–30 keV). The first MCF-7 dose-response study demonstrates how the establishment of a stress-minimized experimental procedure leads to accurate and precise in vitro irradiation results. The cell survival as a function of the surface dose is well described by a first-order exponential decay, indicating that the cellular damage induced by 11.9 keV x-rays is comparable to the lethal effects caused by high linear energy transfer particles. The system design opens up the pathway for combined live-cell imaging and monochromatic keV x-ray appli [ ... ]

A journal paper was accepted by IEEE TCAS-II    (21/08/2016)

"A Fully-integrated Multistage Cross-coupled Voltage Multiplier with No Reversion Power Loss in Standard CMOS Process" by Xiaojian Yu, Kambiz Moez, I-Chy Wey, Mohammad Sawan and Jie Chen  was accepted by IEEE TCAS-II. Novelty: With the trend of integrating different modules on a monolithic system-on-chip, the demand for integrated power management with multiple output voltages is ever increasing. Among the boost converters topologies, switched-capacitor (SC) based step-up DC-DC converters are most appropriate for fully integration in CMOS technology as they do not need the large inductors required in other topologies. In this article, we propose a new structure of cross-coupled voltage multiplier and a clock scheme that eliminates all of the reversion power loss and increases the power efficiency. This design is compatible with the standard CMOS process without any overstress voltage. We implemented the design using 0.13μm IBM CMOS process with a maximum power efficiency of 88.16% and 80.2%, respectively. The maximum voltage conversion efficiency reaches 99.8% under the supply voltage of 1.2 V. 

Two invited talks at coming IEEE Engineering in Medicine and Biology Society, Florida, August 16-20, 2016    (26/07/2016)

1. Peter Hermensen, Scott MacKay, David Wishart and Jie Chen, “Simulations and Design of Microfabricated Interdigitated Electrodes for Use in a Gold Nanoparticle Enhanced Biosensor”, (invited talk in special session “Micro/Nanofabricated Devices for Biomedical Sensing and Diagnostics”), The 38th Annual International Conference of the IEEE Engineering in Medicine and Biology Society, Florida, August 16-20, 2016 2. Xiaojian Yu, Kambiz Moez, I-Chyn Wey, Mohamad Sawan and Jie Chen, “Fully-integrated Multiple-stage Cross-coupled Voltage Multiplier for Lab-on-chip Biosensors”,  (invited talk in special session “Lab-On-Chip Based Biosensors and Actuators for Biomedical Applications”), The 38th Annual International Conference of the IEEE Engineering in Medicine and Biology Society, Florida, August 16-20, 2016

Invited talk at the University of Toronto, Canada    (16/07/2016)

On May 19, Jie Chen was invited to give a talk about his point-of-care device design at the University of Tornoto, Canada

Elected as the Fellow of the Canadian Academy of Engineering    (10/06/2016)

Part of the acceptance letter April 13, 2016 Dear Mr. Chen The Canadian Academy of Engineering (CAE) compreises a small number of distinguished engineers from all disciplines, who have undertaken to serve the country and the profession in matters of broad concern. As President of the CAE, it is my previlege to inform you that, in recognition of your notable achievements, our Fellows have elected to offer you membership in our academy. I congratue you on this outstanding recognition! Should you accept our offer, you will be joining the most highly accomplished men and women in the field of engineering in Canada. ... The indution of new Fellows will occur during our 2016 Annaul Meeting in Winnipeg, Manitoba. The induction ceremony will take place at 18:00 hrs on Monday, June 27 at the Canadian Museum for Human Rights. I hope that you will be able to attend.   ... I look forward to welcoming you into the Canadian Academy of Engineering and to your participation in the Academy's acivities in Winnipeg this June. Yours sincerly, Pierr Lortie, FCAE President

IEEE CASS Distinguished Lecturer talks at IEEE NEW YORK chapter and Tufts University    (27/04/2016)

As a part of IEEE CASS Distinguished lecturer series 2016, Dr. Jie Chen was invited to give a talk at IEEE New York Chapter and Tufts University, Boston, USA.  He was also invited to serve as a judge for the junior student project designs at Syracuse University, USA on April 21, 2016.

NSERC Discovery Grant Renewal in Ultra-low Power Circuit and System Design    (11/04/2016)

Grant Summary: Power consumption has become a key performance criterion for integrated circuit design, especially in battery-based portable systems. Decreasing supply voltage is one of the most efficient and universal techniques to reduce energy dissipation because power is proportional to the square of supply voltage. However, when CMOS devices are scaled down following Moore’s law, noise tolerance becomes the bottleneck for the viability of nanoscale circuits. Furthermore, the smaller noise margin in low-voltage CMOS systems renders them even more sensitive to noise. Soft faults (caused by inherent noise and signal coupling) and hard faults (caused by variability and defects of fabrication technologies) present an obvious problem in nanoscale circuits. Random and dynamic noise, however, do not decrease in the same proportion as supply voltage is scaled down, which becomes a major challenge for low-supply-voltage designs. This Discovery Grant will be used to support the applicant’s ongoing Markov Random Field (MRF) research. The longterm goal is to develop a game-changing probabilistic-based methodology, which can influence future CMOS design. MRF technology is commonly used in signal processing and communication systems. Its creative extension to hardware circuits (pioneered by the applicant) is both highly innovative and with the potential for great rewards in solving intrinsic soft faults and hard faults in nanoscale circuits. His co-authored milestone [ ... ]

Jie Chen was selected as an Associated Editor for IEEE Journal of Translation Engineering in Health and Medicine    (04/04/2016)

Jie Chen was selected as an Associated Editor for IEEE Journal of Translation Engineering in Health and Medicine. It has passed the National Library of Medicine's rigorous Sceintific Quality Review for inclusion in PubMed Central (PMC). For paper submission, please go to

Jie Chen received McCalla Professorship    (19/03/2016)

Announcing the 2016-2017 McCalla Professorships It is my pleasure to announce the recipients of the 2016-2017 McCalla Professorships: • JIE CHEN (Electrical and Computer Engineering, Faculty of Engineering)
• GORDON GOW (Faculty of Extension)
• DEVEREAUX JENNINGS (Strategic Management and Organization, Alberta School of Business)
• WENDY HOGLUND (Psychology, Faculty of Arts)
• SIMON LANDHAUSSER (Renewable Resources, Faculty of Agricultural, Life and Environmental Sciences)
• KIM MISFELDT (Fine Arts and Humanities, Augustana Campus)
• RALF SCHIRRMACHER (Oncology, Faculty of Medicine and Dentistry)
• JOHN WALDRON (Earth and Atmospheric Sciences, Faculty of Science) The abstract of each McCalla Professor has been posted at: The McCalla Professorship recognizes our colleagues' outstanding contributions to the university community and their commitment to integrate teaching, research and learning throughout their careers. This award allows the recipients to further explore and implement strategies integrating their teaching and research. The namesake for the award, Arthur Gilbert McCalla, combined his research in protein chemistry with his passion for teaching, and he was instrumental in developing and expanding graduate studies. He held many senior administrative roles at the University of Alberta, and he was the first Dean of the Faculty of Graduate St [ ... ]

IEEE CAS Distinguished Lecturer 2016-2017    (03/03/2016)

Dear Jie, I am writing to you on behalf of the CAS President, Franco Maloberti and the IEEE Circuits and Systems Society. We are pleased to notify you that you have been selected as an IEEE Circuits and Systems Society Distinguished Lecturer for 2016-2017. The mission of the CAS Distinguished Lecturer Program (DLP) is to serve the needs of the members of the CAS Society to enhance their professional knowledge and vitality by keeping them informed of the latest research results and their practical applications. We are honored to have you serve in this prestigious position in CAS. All information regarding the DLP process is listed here: Please let me know if you have any questions. Congratulations! Kind regards, Brittian Gimbel IEEE Circuits and Systems Society Administrator Phone +1 (352) 872-5544, ext. 302 Fax +1 (352) 872-5545

Other Articles
Nav: Home
Dr. Jie Chen