University of Hawaii

Department of Electrical Engineering

Optofluidic Devices for Cell, Microparticle, and Nanoparticle Manipulation

Date: 2008-05-08
Time: 10:30-11:30
Location: Holmes 389
Speaker: Dr. Aaron T. Ohta, University of California, Berkeley


Optoelectronic tweezers (OET) is an optofluidic device that enables optically-controlled manipulation of particles with sizes ranging from hundreds of microns to tens of nanometers. OET achieves similar forces to conventional optical trapping, but with optical intensities that are up to five orders of magnitude lower. This ability to manipulate micro- and nanoscale particles enables many significant applications, spanning fields from cell biology to nanotechnology. Here, three applications of the OET device are discussed. First, OET trapping, transport, and sorting at the single-cell level is demonstrated for drug screening and cell therapy. In addition, the alignment and assembly of III-V microdisk lasers on silicon by OET enables CMOS- integrated optical interconnects for faster communications. Furthermore, the trapping and positioning of metallic and semiconducting nanowires is demonstrated as a method of creating nanowire-based circuit elements and devices.


Aaron T. Ohta received his B.S. degree in electrical engineering from the University of Hawaii, Manoa, in 2003. He received his M.S. degree in electrical engineering from the University of California, Los Angeles, in 2004, under the supervision of Prof. Ming C. Wu. He is currently a Ph.D. degree candidate in electrical engineering at the University of California, Berkeley. His research interests include MEMS, optical MEMS, bioMEMS, and optofluidic devices. In 2003, he received Eta Kappa Nuís Alton B. Zerby and Carl T. Koerner Outstanding Electrical andComputer Engineering Student Award, recognizing the top student in the nation. He was a recipient of a National Science Foundation Graduate Research Fellowship, a finalist in the National Collegiate Invention Competition, and has four US patents granted or pending as a result of his research activities.