By using a device only six-millionths of a meter long, researchers at Cornell University have been able to detect the presence of as few as a half-dozen viruses -- and they believe the device is sensitive enough to notice just one.
The research could lead to simple detectors capable of differentiating between a wide variety of pathogens,i ncluding viruses, bacteria and toxic organic chemicals. The experiment, an extension of earlier work in which similar devices were used to detect the mass of a single bacterium, is reported in a paper, "Virus detection using nanoelectromechanical devices," in the September 27, 2004, issue ofApplied Physics Letters by Cornell research associate Rob Ilic of the Cornell NanoScale Facility (CNF), Yanou Yang, a Cornell graduate student in biomedical engineering, and Harold Craighead, Cornell professor of applied and engineering physics. The work was done with the assistance of Michael Shuler, Cornell professor of chemical and biological engineering, and microbiologist Gary Blissard of the Boyce Thompson Institute for Plant Research on the Cornell campus.
At CNF, the researchers created arrays of tiny silicon paddles from 6 to 10 micrometers (millionths of a meter) long, half a micrometer wide, and about 150 nanometers (billionths of a meter) thick, with a one-micrometer square pad at the end. Think of a tiny fly-swatter mounted by its handle like a diving board. A large array of paddles were mounted on a piezoelectric crystal that can be made to vibrate at frequencies on the order of 5 to 10 megaHertz (mHz). The experimenters then varied the frequency of vibration of the crystal. When it matched the paddles resonant frequency, the paddles began to vibrate, as measured by focusing a laser on the paddles and noting the change in reflected light, a process called optical interferometry.
Fish recognize their prey by electric colors
13.11.2018 | Rheinische Friedrich-Wilhelms-Universität Bonn
The dawn of a new era for genebanks - molecular characterisation of an entire genebank collection
13.11.2018 | Leibniz-Institut für Pflanzengenetik und Kulturpflanzenforschung
Biochips have been developed at TU Wien (Vienna), on which tissue can be produced and examined. This allows supplying the tissue with different substances in a very controlled way.
Cultivating human cells in the Petri dish is not a big challenge today. Producing artificial tissue, however, permeated by fine blood vessels, is a much more...
Faster and secure data communication: This is the goal of a new joint project involving physicists from the University of Würzburg. The German Federal Ministry of Education and Research funds the project with 14.8 million euro.
In our digital world data security and secure communication are becoming more and more important. Quantum communication is a promising approach to achieve...
On Saturday, 10 November 2018, the research icebreaker Polarstern will leave its homeport of Bremerhaven, bound for Cape Town, South Africa.
When choosing materials to make something, trade-offs need to be made between a host of properties, such as thickness, stiffness and weight. Depending on the application in question, finding just the right balance is the difference between success and failure
Now, a team of Penn Engineers has demonstrated a new material they call "nanocardboard," an ultrathin equivalent of corrugated paper cardboard. A square...
Physicists at ETH Zurich demonstrate how errors that occur during the manipulation of quantum system can be monitored and corrected on the fly
The field of quantum computation has seen tremendous progress in recent years. Bit by bit, quantum devices start to challenge conventional computers, at least...
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