University of Hawaii

Department of Electrical Engineering

Silicon Nanopores for Biosensing Applications

Date: 2008-12-11
Time: 1:30 PM
Location: Holmes Hall Room 389
Speaker: Dr Trevor Thornton

Dr Trevor Thornton

Arizona State University

Department of Electrical Engineering and the Center for Solid State Electronics Research

Tempe, AZ 85287

Electrical measurements of the transport of nanoparticles through silicon nanopores are presented. At low applied bias the particles propagate through the nanopores in a few ms as Coulter events. But at higher bias the transit time is greatly increased and pronounced current switching is observed. The data resembles the voltage gated switching of ion channel proteins. We postulate that the probability of nanoparticles sticking to the walls of the nanopores is greatly enhanced at higher bias due to local electric fields. Applications of the nanopores as biosensors will be discussed.

The talk will emphasize the different processing steps involved in the fabrication of the nanopores. In March 2009 the ASU Nanofab will be joining the NSF funded National Nanoelectronics Infrastructure Network as the southwest regional node. In this capacity the ASU Nanofab facilities will be available to external users across the nation, hopefully including a few from the University of Hawaii!  



Since graduating from Cambridge University (BA 1983, PhD 1987) Trevor Thornton has held post-doctoral appointments at the Cavendish Laboratory, Cambridge (1986-88) and Bell Communications Research in New Jersey (1988-1990). In 1990 he took up a lectureship in the Electrical Engineering Dept. of Imperial College in London University and was promoted to Reader in 1996. In March 1998 he joined the faculty of the ASU Electrical Engineering Dept. His research interests include electron transport in nanostructures, bio-molecular sensors and micropower transistors. From 1991-1998 he worked as a consultant for the Hitachi Cambridge Laboratory and was a Visiting Professor at the NTT Basic Research Laboratories during the summer of 1990. His current appointment is as director of the ASU Center for Solid State Electronics Research.