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2024 | Book

Piezoelectric Sensors


About this book

This book provides a comprehensive overview of piezoelectric sensor devices and instrumentation and their use for chemical and biochemical analysis. Sensors relying on established transducers, such as the quartz crystal microbalance (QCM) and the surface acoustic wave resonator (SAW) are covered, and novel devices like surface transverse wave (STW) resonators, film bulk acoustic resonators (FBAR) as well as non-piezoelectric devices with mass-sensitive properties are presented. As their name implies, such devices respond directly to mass changes on their surfaces and thus address the most fundamental quality of any analytes. First, the book presents the fundamentals of new measuring strategies with these devices. Then, it introduces a variety of chemo- and biosensing application scenarios of these devices. In addition, the book covers both the state-of-the-art of academic research and prospects concerning the commercialization of these sensors. Given its scope, the book is of interest to academics, specialists in industry, and advanced students in the areas of analytical chemistry, rapid analysis, and sensor technology, giving them the unique possibility to familiarize themselves with this chemical sensing strategy. Readers will benefit from the coverage of both cutting-edge research results and applications that help bridge the gap between academia and industry.

Table of Contents

Quartz Crystal Microbalance-Dissipation Technique for Tracking Dynamic Biomacromolecular Interactions
The quartz crystal microbalance-dissipation (QCM-D) technique is a highly surface-sensitive technique for measuring biomacromolecular interactions that occur at solid–liquid interfaces. Key advantages of the acoustic-based QCM-D technique include its label-free format, fast measurement response, compatibility with various material interfaces, and high sensitivity to detect not only the amount and configuration of biomacromolecular adsorbates but also hydrodynamically coupled solvent near the sensor surface. This sensitivity is particularly important for detecting structural changes associated with dynamic biomacromolecular interactions relevant to biological systems. In this chapter, the main objective is to introduce how the QCM-D technique is useful for medical and biotechnology applications related to tracking dynamic biomacromolecular interactions. The basic measurement principles of the QCM-D technique and popular modeling approaches are introduced before reviewing a selection of classical and recent application examples that involve lipid membranes, proteins, peptides, biosurfactants, and detergents. Two main classes of dynamic biomacromolecular interactions are covered as representative cases of different measurement scenarios, i.e., the structural transformation of (1) soft adsorbates into rigid adsorbates and (2) rigid adsorbates into soft adsorbates. Particular focus is placed on biomimetic lipid membrane platforms and on critically discussing the suitability of applying physics-based models to interpret QCM-D measurement data in specific biomacromolecular interaction cases. Alternative interpretation strategies based on empirical testing are also described in order to support biologically directed analyses. As presented in this chapter, ongoing progress in the field supports that the QCM-D technique has a bright future for studying complex biological phenomena at solid–liquid interfaces across a wide range of topics spanning fundamental and translational viewpoints.
Joshua A. Jackman
FBAR Devices: Fundamentals, Fabrication and Applications
Film Bulk Acoustic Resonators (FBARs), also known as Thin Film Bulk Acoustic Resonators (TFBARs), are one of the key players in the recent ongoing era of 5G technologies. We have hundreds of them in our pockets, as their principal application is exploited by the telecom industry in RF filters for smartphones. In addition to that, FBARs have boosted the performance limits of gravimetric sensors, providing resolutions in the pg and fg levels. Within the wide variety of electroacoustic resonators technologies, which includes both Surface Acoustic Wave (SAW) and Bulk Acoustic Wave (BAW) based devices, FBARs withstand as the most capable candidates for high frequency operation, high power handling capabilities, small size, high performance, and IC compatibility. Although they are not new – they first appeared in the 1960s – their performance improvement and applications are continuously evolving. This chapter will guide the reader through the summarized story of FBARs. We will cover their fundamentals, manufacturing processes, their performance state of the art and their most relevant applications.
Teona Mirea
Examples of Vibrating MEMS Sensing Physical Parameters for Chemical Gas Detection
This chapter presents advantages and drawbacks to achieve chemical detection without the use of sensitive coating by measuring physical properties of gas. Examples of such detections are presented using two kinds of vibrating MEMS: microcantilevers and capacitive micromachined ultrasonic transducers (CMUT). The main advantages of such sensors relying on their concept are their short response time, good reliability and no need for calibration during the sensor’s life cycle. Their major drawback is that there is no selectivity if only one physical parameter measurement is done. To overcome this drawback, discrimination between different gas mixtures can be achieved by simultaneous measurements of multiple physical properties of the gas. This latter principle has been applied with either microcantilevers or CMUT with the simultaneous measurements of either viscosity and mass density or acoustic wave speed and attenuation of gas.
Isabelle Dufour
QCM Strategies for Fundamental and Applied Measurements on Particles and Formulations
Quartz crystal microbalance (QCM) is a well-known analytical technique that enables sensitive and accurate measurement and characterization of materials adsorbed on a crystal’s surface. QCM has been demonstrated to be highly reliable to measure and characterize the mass of deposited samples, in both gas and liquid phases. In addition, the technique offers real-time monitoring, as well as low operation costs. These features make QCM suitable for a wide range of applications, from mass sensing for biosensors to the study of biomolecules, nanoparticles, and functionalized surface interactions. Hence, QCM has been exploited for the optimization of nanoparticles, thin films, and drugs’ formulations, for the development of their manufacturing process and as a versatile and easy-to-use tool for quality control. This chapter, therefore, firstly summarizes and critically reviews the latest fundamental and applied research studies on the implementations of QCM and QCM-D (QCM with dissipation factor) for the characterization of particles, films, and their interactions both with surfaces and the environment. Then research studies on the use of QCM in the pharmaceutical industry for the optimization of drugs’ formulations and for quality-control post manufacturing are also presented and discussed.
Iva Chianella
Robust QCM-Based Sensing and Assay Formats in Commercialized Systems
Attana’s Quartz Crystal Microbalance (QCM) analytical instruments have been developed to study in vitro biological interactions, mimicking the in vivo conditions. Attana’s superior technology for kinetic interaction studies allows to perform different assays, including biochemical, crude, sera, cell, and tissue-based, in vitro diagnostic and material chemistry assays, in real time and label free. With the focus to validate, select, and optimize drug candidates prior to clinical trials, Attana has helped pharmaceutical companies to increase their efficiency and profitability. In addition, the Attana instruments and services have been used in many other applications and research as described in this chapter.
Claudia Durall, Daniel Wallinder, Ahmed Ibrahim, Andreas Nolting, Mahmoud Almajdoub, Nicholas Jones, Subramanian Suriyanarayanan, Ian A. Nicholls, Teodor Aastrup
Biological, Bio-Derived, and Biomimetic Receptors in Mass-Sensitive Sensing
A range of biological recognition materials have been implemented in sensing leading to biosensors based on, e.g., antibodies and enzymes. Aside from these, a wide variety of biomimetic approaches have been published, not least in the context of mass-sensitive sensing. These range from receptors derived directly from nature, such as peptides or (olfactory) proteins, to fully artificial systems, such as molecularly imprinted polymers. This chapter introduces a wide range of such man-made receptor strategies in the context of mass-sensitive sensing. It also covers the most promising application areas identified in the literature, namely diagnostics, environmental monitoring, food safety, and public security. A larger part of the chapter covers molecularly imprinted polymers (MIP) and their role in mass-sensitive sensing, because those have turned out to be the most widespread type of biomimetic recognition species in this context.
Adriana Feldner, Julia Völkle, Felix Thier, Peter Lieberzeit
Applications and Recent Trends in Surface Acoustic Wave Biosensors
This chapter presents the most relevant applications of surface acoustic wave (SAW) biosensors published between 2019 and the beginning of 2023. These recent studies showed that besides quantifying several types of proteins and detecting bacteria and viruses, SAW biosensors can access cells’ viscous/elastic properties and their adhesion/growth/detachment processes. Numerous functionalization methods are presented, from the most common ones, such as self-assembled layers and molecularly imprinted polymers, to sophisticated ones, such as sandwich structures incorporating doped nanoparticles (NP) or NP-decorated graphene tubes. In this chapter, we also present new trends in SAW biosensors. Two routes can be used separately or simultaneously: using new multi-layered piezoelectric materials with high coupling coefficients and/or high acoustic wave velocities and new geometries of interdigital transducers (IDTs). This chapter finally puts forward the interest of multi-transduction to access multiparametric response accurately and fully characterize analytes in complex media. It highlights the potential of biosensors to address different public health and to accompany the current trends toward detecting increasingly small biological entities.
Najla Fourati, Ghada Attia, Sohayb Khaoulani, Chouki Zerrouki
FBAR Gas Sensors
Small-sized, high-sensitivity, and low-cost sensors are required for gas-sensing applications because of their critical role in environmental monitoring, clinic diagnosis, process control, and anti-terrorism. Given the rapid developments in micro-fabrication and microelectromechanical system (MEMS) technologies, film bulk acoustic resonator (FBAR) gas sensors have received increased research attention because of their improved working frequency and reliability. This chapter discusses the state-of-the-art and recent developments in FBAR gas sensors. The sensing mechanism and limitations of these sensors are summarized. Recent progress in the development of four major aspects of FBAR gas sensors, namely, FBAR gas sensors using different sensing materials, FBAR gas sensors used in electronic noses, system integration of FBAR gas sensors, and FBAR gas sensors used as micro-GC detectors, is reviewed. The potential future of FBAR sensors used in flexible electronics is also discussed.
Zilun Wang, Xueyou Sun, Ye Chang, Xuexin Duan, Wei Pang
Resonant Silicon Microcantilevers for Particle and Gas Sensing
Resonant Silicon Microcantilevers (RSMCs) serve as highly suitable Mass-Sensitive Transducers (MSTs) for effective miniaturization, owing to their uncomplicated cantilever device structure and the inherent architectural adaptability of silicon. In comparison with conventional technologies, resonant microcantilevers offer several promising advantages: exceptional sensitivity, cost-effectiveness, robustness, scalability, minimal sample requirements, low energy consumption, rapid response times, and a label-free process devoid of hazards. The extensive research conducted on microcantilever sensors has underscored their versatile analytical capabilities, encompassing the detection of particulate matter in both air and liquids, humidity measurement, and gas sensing applications. This comprehensive chapter presents a thorough exploration of the cutting-edge advancements in microcantilever-based particle and gas sensors. It delves into their underlying working principles, design considerations, the functionalization and packaging of microcantilevers, and the manifold applications they serve, while also shedding light on the future potential in this domain.
Jiushuai Xu, Erwin Peiner
Piezoelectric Sensors
Peter Lieberzeit
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