Interview with Marco Renna (POLIMI)

You are pursuing your PhD degree. How did you enter this project?

During my master’s program, I started working with Prof. Alberto Tosi’s research group in the development of fast laser diode pulsers and ancillary electronics for an instrument based on non-invasive spectroscopy for biological tissues. Upon receiving my degree, Prof. Tosi offered me the opportunity to join the LUCA project due to my thorough knowledge on the subject.

Why did you decide to work in the field of biomedicine?

Working in the biomedical field is an honour for me, mainly because I believe it is a great opportunity to contribute in the development of new instruments and techniques, which may be useful to improve our quality of life. For me, this is a key aspect with respect to other projects that are currently being carried out in our research group here at Politecnico di Milano.

What challenges do you face in your daily activities?

Because we are constructing a brand new instrument, every day we face issues that nobody has ever encountered before, forcing us to find new solutions on every occasion. Surely enough, I believe the most difficult thing I had to overcome was the development of the TRS module. The interference emitted by the pulsed laser sources coupled to the single-photon detector and thus degraded the system performance. Thus, I had to study the nature of the problem carefully to find a way to reduce interference while maintaining an optimal performance.

What are you in charge of developing within the project? What is your field of expertise?

My task within the LUCA project consists in developing the timeresolved spectroscopy instrument sub-system, which is part of the integrated LUCA system. I designed and developed the pulsed laser sources module and the TRS control unit in addition to all the ancillary electronics required for an instrument that needs to operate in a clinical environment.


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Marco Renna received his Master’s degree in Electronics Engineering from Politecnico di Milano, Milan, Italy in 2016, which was focused on the development of a compact instrument for time-resolved nearinfrared spectroscopy. Immediately after he graduated, he decided to pursue his Ph.d. degree in information technology at the same university. His current main research activities are based on the development of pulsed laser sources and fast acquisition electronics for advanced multichannel TCSPC systems.

Posted on Thursday 18 January 2018