Micro & Nanosystems

MEMS sensors and actuators; nanofabrication materials, processes and devices; labs-on-a-chip; small-scale energy generation, storage and harvesting; microsystem medical devices and treatments; trust and security for nano-scale devices.

ISR researchers have developed nanoscale technologies for sensing and manipulation. These systems include biologically inspired cell-based sensors and biological and chemical sensing systems for toxin detection, micro-ball bearing and three-dimensional grayscale microfabrication technologies for microengines, microfluidic medical devices for detecting and treating biofilms, and ingestible capsules to sense and provide medication in the GI tract. We are currently condusting research into cognitive sensing. Our research has contributed to advances in batteries, including a tobacco mosaic virus scaffold battery with high surface area and capacity, high-powered nanostructured 3D microbatteries, and carbon nanotube current collectors for aqueous battery systems.

Recent news

Recent publications

2020

Rotor-induced Airflow for Odor Source Detection on Nano-Quadcopters

Alexander Castro, Leo Peckerar, Timothy Horiuchi, Pamela Abshire

A nano-quadcopter system that performs odor detection in a windless indoor environment. The system uses the Crazyflie platform and incorporates a single commercially available metal oxide semiconductor gas sensor. The authors demonstrate that rotor-induced airflow enhances odor detection. It can be considered to be the quadrotor equivalent of sniffing behavior.

2020 IEEE SENSORS Conference

Lessons Learned the Hard Way

Pamela Abshire and 32 others

This paper shows that even failed attempts are genuine and valuable contributions to our field provided that we learn from our mistakes and correct them. The 27 confessions span from planning oversights, digital and analog design errors, misunderstanding of devices, overlooked parasitics, LVS errors, and troubles in testing.

2020 IEEE International Symposium on Circuits and Systems (ISCAS)

2019

An Imaging Platform for Real-Time In Vitro Microscopic Imaging for Lab-on-CMOS Systems

Bathiya Senevirathna, Sheung Luhave, Elisabeth Smela, Pamela Abshire

The first real-time imaging platform that generates high-quality images of lab-on-CMOS systems in cell culture environments.

2019 IEEE Biomedical Circuits and Systems Conference (BioCAS)

2021

Integrated System for Bacterial Detection and Biofilm Treatment On Indwelling Urinary Catheters

Ryan Huiszoon, Jinjing Han, Sangwook Chu, Justin Stine, Luke Beardslee, Reza Ghodssi

This work introduces an integrated system incorporated seamlessly with a commercial Foley urinary catheter for bacterial growth sensing and biofilm treatment.

IEEE Transactions on Biomedical Engineering

Reprogramming Virus Coat Protein Carboxylate Interactions for the Patterned Assembly of Hierarchical Nanorods

Adam Brown, Sangwook Chu, Madhu Kappagantu, Reza Ghodssi, James Culver

The self-assembly system of the rod-shaped tobacco mosaic virus (TMV) has been studied extensively for nanoscale applications. TMV coat protein assembly is modulated by intersubunit carboxylate groups whose electrostatic repulsion limits the assembly of virus rods without incorporating genomic RNA. To engineer assembly control into this system, the authors reprogrammed intersubunit carboxylate interactions to produce self-assembling coat proteins in the absence of RNA and in response to unique pH and ionic environmental conditions.

ACS Biomacromolecules

2020

Electrochemical measurement of serotonin by Au-CNT electrodes fabricated on microporous cell culture membranes

Ashley Chapin, Pradeep Rajasekaran, David Quan, Liangbing Hu, Jens Herberholz, William Bentley, Reza Ghodssi

Develops a platform that provides access to the specific site of serotonin production, important because serotonin is secreted from the bottoms of cells. An innovative porous membrane with an integrated serotonin sensor on which a model of the gut lining can be grown allowed researchers to access both top and bottom sides of the cell culture.

Microsystems & Nanoengineering (a Nature publication)

A Hybrid Biomonitoring System for Gut-Neuron Communication

Ashley Chapin, Jinjing Han, Ta-Wen Ho, Jens Herberholz, Reza Ghodssi

An integrated electrochemical and electrophysiological biomonitoring system, enabling the study of molecular signaling along the gut-brain-axis (GBA).

Journal of Microelectromechanical Systems

3D-printed electrochemical sensor-integrated transwell systems

Pradeep Rajasekaran, Ashley Chapin, David Quan, Jens Herberholz, William Bentley, Reza Ghodssi

Explores the development of a 3D-printed housing, the maintenance of a healthy lab-on-a-chip gut cell culture, and the evaluation of the two types of sensors integrated on the cell culture membrane.

Microsystems & Nanoengineering (a Nature publication)

Wireless Sensor-Integrated Platform for Localized Dissolved Oxygen Sensing in Bioreactors

Justin Stine, Luke Beardslee, Sangwook Chu, Sanwei Liu, Dana Motabar, William Bentley, Reza Ghodssi

The bPod prototype developed in the S&A paper is reduced to the size of a cherry. This research significantly advances the PCB-electronics design, DO sensor, and packaging to achieve the overall system miniaturization desired for use in realistic bioreactor environments.

Journal of Microelectromechanical Systems

Electrochemical Dissolved Oxygen Sensor-Integrated Platform for Wireless In Situ Bioprocess Monitoring

Justin Stine, Luke Beardslee, Rajendra Sathyam, William Bentley, Reza Ghodssi

The researchers develop a golf ball-sized bioprocessing online device (bPod) capable of real-time in situ monitoring of bioreactor cell culture parameters, such as dissolved oxygen.

Sensors & Actuators B: Chemical

Capacitive sensing of triglyceride film reactions: a proof-of-concept demonstration for sensing in simulated duodenal contents with gastrointestinal targeting capsule system

George Banis, Ragendramayavan Sathyam, Luke Beardslee, Justin Stine, Reza Ghodssi

Describes an integrated ingestible capsule sensing system with triglyceride film-coated capacitive sensors that can measure biochemical species such as pancreatic lipase and bile acids in the duodenum. The microfabricated capacitive sensors communicate via a Bluetooth low-energy (BLE)-microcontroller, which allows wireless connectivity to a mobile app.

Lab on a Chip

Ingestible Sensors and Sensing Systems for Minimally Invasive Diagnosis and Monitoring: The Next Frontier in Minimally Invasive Screening

Luke Beardslee, George Banis, Sangwook Chu, Sanwei Liu, Ashley Chapin, Justin Stine, Pankaj Pasricha, Reza Ghodssi

This review examines the conventional techniques, as well as ingestible sensors and sensing systems that are currently under development for use in disease screening and diagnosis for GI disorders. Design considerations, fabrication, and applications are discussed.

ACS Sensors

2019

Microsystems for Biofilm Characterization and Sensing—A Review

Sowmya Subramanian, Ryan Huiszoon, Sangwook Chu, William Bentley, Reza Ghodssi

A review that focuses on several types of microsystems for biofilm evaluation including optical, electro-chemical, and mechanical systems. This review will show how these devices can lead to better understanding of the physiology and function of these communities of bacteria, which can eventually lead to the development of novel treatments that do not rely on high-dosage antibiotics.

Biofilm

Virus-assembled technology for next-generation bioenergy harvesting devices

Sangwook Chu, Adam Brown, James Culver, Reza Ghodssi

Research into Tobacco mosaic virus (TMV)-based assembly of glucose oxidase electrodes for the development of advanced enzymatic biofuel cells (EBCs).

PowerMEMS 2018: Journal of Physics Conference Series, IOP Publishing

2019

Incomplete ionization in aluminum-doped 4H-silicon carbide

Christopher Darmody and Neil Goldsman

An investigation of the degree of incomplete ionization of aluminum-doped 4H-silicon carbide. The research contributes to the advance of p-type silicon carbide (SiC) technology.

Journal of Applied Physics

2021

Broadband ultra-long acoustic jet based on double-foci Luneburg lens

Liuxian Zhao, Timothy Horiuchi, Miao Yu

A novel gradient index (GRIN) acoustic metamaterial is proposed based on the concept of optical modified generalized Luneburg lens (MGLL). With the MGLL, double-foci and high energy density between the two foci can be achieved, which enables the realization of an ultra-long acoustic jet between the two foci.

Journal of the Acoustical Society of America Express Letters 1

 

2020

Rotor-induced Airflow for Odor Source Detection on Nano-Quadcopters

Alexander Castro, Leo Peckerar, Timothy Horiuchi, Pamela Abshire

A nano-quadcopter system that performs odor detection in a windless indoor environment. The system uses the Crazyflie platform and incorporates a single commercially available metal oxide semiconductor gas sensor. The authors demonstrate that rotor-induced airflow enhances odor detection. It can be considered to be the quadrotor equivalent of sniffing behavior.

2020 IEEE SENSORS Conference

2022

Structural Lens for Broadband Triple Focusing and Three-Beam Splitting of Flexural Waves

Liuxian Zhao, Chaunxing Bi, Miao Yu

A lens design based on a concentric circular structure with continuous changing of thickness defined in a thin plate structure for focusing a plane wave into three spots (triple focusing) and for splitting elastic waves emanating from a point source into three collimated beams of different directions (three-beam splitting). The locations of focal points and directions of collimated beams can be engineered by changing the lens thickness profiles according to the governing equations. The simply designed miniature lens overcomes the limitations of previous triple focusing and beam splitters. This gradient-index (GRIN) design can benefit applications that require on-board multi-source energy harvesting—for example, damage detection, beam steering, signal processing, vibration control, underwater detection, multiplexing, structural health monitoring, and ultrasonic medical imaging.

International Journal of Mechanical Sciences

Designing flexural wave gradient index lens based on the Rays Inserting Method

Liuxian Zhao, Chaunxing Bi, Miao Yu

The ability to control and manipulate elastic waves is important for applications such as structural health monitoring, signal processing, and vibration isolations. In this paper, the authors investigated the feasibility of using the Rays Inserting Method (RIM), an approach originally proposed for optical elements, to design structural components for flexural wave manipulation along desired paths. A lens was designed to act as a collimator with a point source excitation. A lens was designed to act as a waveguide which can rotate the direction of incident wave with 45°. Lenses were achieved with variable thickness structures.

Results in Physics

Ultralong Wave Focusing via Generalized Luneburg Lens

Liuxian Zhao, Miao Yu

A gradient index (GRIN) structural lens based on the concept of generalized Luneburg lens (GLL) is proposed. This lens allows for the realization of double foci and localization of energy flow between the two focal spots, thereby achieving ultralong focusing.

arXiv.org, via Cornell University

Structural Luneburg lens for broadband ultralong subwavelength focusing

Liuxian Zhao, Hyun-Tae Kim, Miao Yu

A gradient index (GRIN) structural lens based on the concept of generalized Luneburg lens (GLL) allows for the realization of double foci and localization of energy flow between the two focal spots, thereby achieving ultralong focusing for a broadband frequency range. In addition, full length at half maximum (FLHM), and full width at half maximum (FWHM) of the focal region of the lens can be tailored through the design of the focal length of the GLL. This offers a simple and flexible approach of engineering the GLL focusing characteristics and energy distributions for many applications, particularly vibration-based energy harvesting.

Mechanical Systems and Signal Processing (Elsevier)

High-speed, large dynamic range spectral domain interrogation of fiber-optic Fabry–Perot interferometric sensors

Kit Pan Wong, Hyun-Tae Kim, Keshav Rajasekaran, Amirhossein Yazdkhasti, Bala Sai Sudhakar, An Wang, Samuel E. Lee, Kenneth Kiger, James H. Duncan, and Miao Yu

This work will benefit many applications that require high-speed interrogation of fiber-optic FP interferometric sensors. An optical interrogation system employing a piezoelectric FP tunable filter and an array of fiber-Bragg gratings for wavelength referencing is developed to acquire the reflection spectrum of FP sensors at a high interrogation speed with a wide wavelength range. Pressure measurement results show that the high-speed spectral domain interrogation method has the advantages of being robust to light intensity fluctuations and having a much larger dynamic range compared with the conventional intensity-based interrogation method. Moreover, owing to its capability of measuring the absolute FP cavity length, this interrogation system mitigates the sensitivity drift that intensity-based interrogation often suffers from. The acoustic measurement results demonstrate that the high-speed spectral domain interrogation method is capable of high-frequency acoustic measurements of up to 20 kHz.

Applied Optics

2021

On-fiber multiparameter sensor based on guided-wave surface plasmon resonances

Hyun-Tae Kim, Miao Yu

The authors develop an ultracompact on-fiber multiparameter sensor that employs multiple guided-wave surface plasmon resonances (GWSPRs) and machine learning-based signal processing. The sensor structure entails a gold plasmonic crystal cavity covered with a planar dielectric waveguide on the end-face of a single-mode fiber. Incident light on the gold gratings of the plasmonic crystal cavity excites surface plasmon resonances, which are coupled into the waveguide and induce multiple, high-Q GWSPRs. This sensor can benefit multifunctional analysis in a broad range of biological, chemical, and environmental monitoring applications.

IEEE Journal of Lightwave Technology

Broadband ultra-long acoustic jet based on double-foci Luneburg lens

Liuxian Zhao, Timothy Horiuchi, Miao Yu

A novel gradient index (GRIN) acoustic metamaterial is proposed based on the concept of optical modified generalized Luneburg lens (MGLL). With the MGLL, double-foci and high energy density between the two foci can be achieved, which enables the realization of an ultra-long acoustic jet between the two foci.

Journal of the Acoustical Society of America Express Letters 1

2020

Ultracompact gas sensor with metal-organic-framework-based differential fiber-optic Fabry-Perot nanocavities

Hyun-Tae Kim, Wonseok Hwang, Yun Liu, Miao Yu

The researchers develop an RI-based ultracompact fiber-optic differential gas sensor. The sensor’s sensitivity and selectivity to particular gas molecules is enhanced by using MOF-based dual Fabry-Perot (FP) nanocavities.

Optics Express


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