From November 10th to September 13th of 2021 the call to participate in the CINTECX Challenge 2022 will be open, the annual tender for grants in the form of competitive competition for the development of collaborative R&D projects between the different research groups integrated in the Research Center for Technologies, Energy and Industrial Processes.

Like every year, the competition idea+project form will be connected to the field of Industrial Technologies, with a free theme in this edition. With this, we seek many high-value proposals from the center research groups in the form of collaborative projects. Also in this Challenge, the assignment to finance the implementation of the winning idea will be 15.000,00€, computing the period for execution of the projects from 01/02/2022 to 31/12/2022.


Application requirements

  1. The members of the research team must be members of the Research Center for Technologies, Energy and Industrial Process (CINTECX) at the time of submitting the application.
  2. They must have the participation of at least 2 researchers, from at least 2 research groups of CINTECX (one of two of or which will act as IPs) to increase the level of connection between the center´s researchers. The proposal must have the approval of the coordinators of the research groups to which the research team belongs.
  3. The proposal presented must be aligned with the technological areas and the priority lines of the scientific agenda of CINTECX and contribute to the projection and visibility of the center.

As is customary, these actions are contemplated within the CINTECX Strategic Plan, helping in the commitment to fulfill its strategic objectives. In addition, an important component of the challenge is to reach the general audience, so the results of the challenge will be presented at the annual event called “Singular Science” promoted by local authorities.

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The CINTECX research center has just published the resolution of the CHALLENGE-2022 call. This third call was also very well received by the center’s researchers. Two proposals were presented involving six of the ten groups of the center and that have a great scientific quality and social impact, one in the line of application of technologies for the conservation of cultural heritage and the other in the field of biomedical engineering.


Development of a heat-able 3D biomedical device for antibacterial control

The diagnosis and treatment of bacterial infections is currently a major challenge in the biomedical field, with particular relevance to infections associated with joint implants and dental tissue.

Hyperthermia (increased body temperature) is presented as an alternative to be explored and several studies have shown its efficacy against infectious pathogens and drug-resistant strains.

Among the methods for inducing slight hyperthermia (≤42ºC) in living tissues, laser radiation in the VIS-NIR range stands out, which is based on exposing a photosensitive material to this radiation, inducing heating at a distance and controlled local hyperthermia in the tissue in contact. One of these photosensitive materials with strong absorption in the infrared region is graphene oxide, which has other characteristics of great interest in the field of biomaterials.

With the rise of 3D technologies, the development of personalised biomedical devices is clearly expanding and more efficient biomaterials are required, involving less invasive solutions and the consumption of fewer resources.

The general objective of the project is the design and manufacture by 3D printing of a biomedical heating device in the form of a dental splint, based on the incorporation of graphene oxide in a polymeric matrix of polylactic acid and irradiation with VIS-NIR laser, to induce slight hyperthermia (≤42ºC) on the gingival tissue, achieving an antibacterial effect.

The project presented is aligned with the technological areas and priority lines of the scientific agenda of the CINTECX, specifically within the scope of the RIS3 of Galicia focused on the New model of healthy life based on the active ageing of the population.

This proposal integrates three research groups of CINTECX:

  • Grupo Novos Materiais (FA3)
  • Grupo de Tecnología Energética (GTE)
  • Grupo de Diseño y Simulación Numérica en Ingeniería Mecánica (DSN)

In January 2023, as a result of the research of this project, the article “Thermal Behavior of Graphene Oxide Deposited on 3D-Printed Polylactic Acid for Photothermal Therapy: An Experimental–Numerical Analysis” is published. In this article, the thermal behavior of graphene oxide (GO) is evaluated when it is deposited on 3D printed polylactic acid (PLA), in order to develop a medical device for photothermal therapy applications. The results obtained in this work demonstrate that the use of GO, coated in 3D printed PLA, is a valid method for NIR photothermal therapy applications.


Last 14th of September Irene Fernández defended her Final Degree Project in the Biomedical Engineering Degree. This work has been co-directed by Christian Gil and Jesús Vence from the GTE Group.

Laura González and Sara Pérez, from the New Materials Group, attended the XVI National Materials Congress, CNMAT 2022, in Ciudad Real, from 28 June to 1 July 2022. There they presented the first results of the project.

After a 3-month stay at the Biofilm Research Group of the Centre of Biological Engineering at the Universidade do Minho (april-june 2022), researcher Laura González, from the New Materials Group, was able to complement her thesis with interesting results on the antibacterial behaviour of hyperthermia generated by laser irradiation of graphene oxide-based devices.