Entry Date:
July 7, 2009

Laboratory for Energy and Microsystems Innovation (LEMI)

Principal Investigator Cullen Buie

Project Website http://web.mit.edu/lemi/

The LEMI mission is to exploit microscale electric field driven transport phenomena for applications in biotechnology, fluid mechanics, and energy. In microbial biotechnology, LEMI employs electric fields to both manipulate and assess cell phenotypes of interest for applications ranging from healthcare to biofuels.

LEMI is also developing a hydrogen bromine laminar flow battery (HBLFB). This technology, boasting a membrane-less architecture, was invented in LEMI and is being developed in collaboration with Martin Bazant (Chemical Engineering, MIT). The power density and efficiency of the HBLFB rival the best membrane-based systems, but at potentially lower cost by using cheap, plentiful reactants and eliminating the need for expensive membranes.

LEMI investigates the intersections between Electrochemistry, Electrokinetics, and Microfluidics engineering for 21st Century energy systems. Applications of interest include proton exchange membrane fuel cells, electrolyzers, and microbial fuel cells. The interdisciplinary research thrusts lie at the boundaries mechanical engineering, chemistry, and biology.