Development of Low-cost Smartphone-based Microscope for Global Health
Project Description

The developing world does not have access to many of the best medical diagnostic technologies; they were designed for air-conditioned laboratories, refrigerated storage of chemicals, a constant supply of calibrators and reagents, stable electrical power, highly trained personnel and rapid transportation of samples. For example, of the world's population of about 6 billion people, 3 billion lack basic sanitation and more than 1 billion lack basic healthcare services and clean drinking water.

This project in collaboration with Prof Shengwang Du in Department of Physics and HKUST SIGHT ( is to develop a low-cost smartphone-based microscope for medical diagnosis for those people lack of basic healthcare in Cambodia.

LEE Yi-Kuen
Course type
Applicant's Roles

The UROP student will form a team from Department of Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering, Department of Physics, and DivisIon of Biomedical Engineering to develop the proposed smartphone-based microscope.

Applicant's Learning Objectives

1 Understand basic principle of optical microscopes,

2 Develop an understanding of CMOS image sensors (digital camera) in smartphones

3 Develop an understanding of mechanical design and manufacturing for the optical system used in smartphone based microscope

4 Develop Android app programming skill for the proposed smartphone-based microscope

5 Develop and practice communication and team skills.

Complexity of the project