Chris Backhouse

Chris Backhouse

Contact information


Chris Backhouse

Biography summary

Chris Backhouse is a Professor in the Electrical and Computer Engineering department at the University of Waterloo.

His research interests include nano-biological technology based quantum devices, medical diagnostics, miniaturization and microfluidic lab-on-a-chip systems.

Following graduation at the University of British Columbia, Professor Backhouse held academic and industrial fellowships in electrochemistry with the university and in non-invasive medical imaging with CTF Systems. Working together with Applied Biosystems, a life technologies company, he developed large-scale microchips and their fabrication technologies for use in the Human Genome Project. Professor Backhouse also led a research team in developing genetic analysis instrumentation that is now being sold internationally.

Professor Backhouse’s research work was recognized by the Association of Professional Engineers, Geologists, and Geophysicists of Alberta and was awarded the Summit Award for Project Achievement in 2008. His accomplishments were also recognized by Engineers Canada, thus presenting him with the National Award for an Engineering Project of 2009. In addition to his many accomplishments, Professor Backhouse has written numerous articles and journals through IEEE and other various organizations.

Research interests

  • Quantum devices
  • Biomedical engineering
  • MEMS/MOEMS and CMOS integration
  • Lab on chip
  • Medical diagnostic devices
  • Microfluidic devices
  • Radio astronomy
  • Sensors
  • Microfabrication
  • Remote sensing
  • Nanotechnology


  • 1992, Doctorate, Electrical Engineering, University of British Columbia
  • 1987, Master of Science, Physics/Radio Astronomy, University of British Columbia
  • 1985, Bachelor of Science (BSc), Physics, University of Alberta


  • NE 455B - Nano-instrumentation Laboratory 2
    • Taught in 2019
  • NE 479 - Special Topics in Nanoelectronics
    • Taught in 2019

* Only courses taught in the past 5 years are displayed.

Selected/recent publications

  • Martinez-Quijada, Jose and Caverhill-Godkewitsch, Saul and Reynolds, Matthew and Sloan, David and Backhouse, Christopher J and Elliott, Duncan G and Sameoto, Dan, Deterministic Design of Thin-Film Heaters for Precise Spatial Temperature Control in Lab-on-Chip Systems, Journal of Microelectromechanical Systems, 25(3), 2016, 508 - 516
  • Hall, Gordon H and Glerum, D Moira and Backhouse, Christopher J, Light emitting diode, photodiode-based fluorescence detection system for DNA analysis with microchip electrophoresis, Electrophoresis, 37(3), 2016, 406 - 413
  • Martinez-Quijada, Jose and Ma, Tianchi and Hall, Gordon H and Reynolds, Matt and Sloan, David and Caverhill-Godkewitsch, Saul and Glerum, D Moira and Sameoto, Dan and Elliott, Duncan G and Backhouse, Christopher J, Robust thermal control for CMOS-based lab-on-chip systems, Journal of Micromechanics and Microengineering, 25(7), 2015
  • Williams, Graeme and Backhouse, Christopher and Aziz, Hany, Integration of organic light emitting diodes and organic photodetectors for lab-on-a-chip bio-detection systems, Electronics, 3(1), 2014, 43 - 75
  • Hall, Gordon H and Sloan, David L and Ma, Tianchi and Couse, Madeline H and Martel, Stephane and Elliott, Duncan G and Glerum, D Moira and Backhouse, Christopher J, An optical relay approach to very low cost hybrid polymer-complementary metal-oxide semiconductor electrophoresis instrumentation, Journal of Chromatography A, 1349, 2014, 122 - 128

Graduate studies