Electrokinetic effects on detection time of nanowire biosensor

Liu, Yaling; Guo, Qingjiang; Wang, Shunqiang; Hu, Walter
April 2012
Applied Physics Letters;4/9/2012, Vol. 100 Issue 15, p153502
Academic Journal
We develop a multiphysics model to study the contribution of electrokinetics on the biomolecular detection process and provide a physical explanation of the two to three orders of magnitude difference in detection time between experimental results and theoretical predications at ultralow concentration. The electrokinetic effects, including electrophoretic force and electroosmotic flow, have been systematically studied under various sensor design and test conditions. In a typical single nanowire-based sensor, it is found that electrokinetic effects could result in a reduction of detection time over 90 times, compared with that induced by pure biomolecular diffusion. The detection time difference is further enhanced by increasing the applied gate voltage or the number of nanowires. It is proposed that accelerated biomolecular detection at ultralow concentration could be achieved by appropriate combinations of electrokinetic effects and nanowire sensor design.


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