HandSAW MS source (not open 2016/2017)

Hand-held surface acoustic wave (HandSAW) platform as an ion source for field analysis of molecular mass and fragmentation patterns.

David B. Go, Department of Aerospace and Mechanical Engineering (UND), Scott Howard, Department of Electrical Engineering (UND), and Hseuh-Chia Chang, Department of Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering (UND)

Microfluidic devices have shown tremendous promise for tackling low-cost diagnostic challenges prevalent in the developing world such as point-of-care medicine and environmental analysis. Surface acoustic wave (SAW) devices are one type of microfluidic device that shows significant potential for transition to field-portable instruments because they are inherently small (a SAW device is typically on the order of 5-10 cm2), and their driving electronics can be easily miniaturized and battery-operated.[i] We have been utilizing SAW devices for various microfluidic applications, including the nebulization of small volumes of liquid samples that are subsequently analyzed by mass spectrometry.[ii] The goal of this research project is to develop and fabricate a hand-held SAW platform with an integrated SAW device, fluid storage and delivery system, and battery-powered power supply. The device would then be characterized as a stand-alone sample delivery and ionization system suitable for field-portable mass and ion-mobility spectrometers.  Additional applications that will be explored will be a SAW-based molecular sensor using an impendence technique with a similar portable power supply. A student working on this project should have an interest and, ideally some background, in electronics but the research focus will be on instrumentation for chemical analysis. The student will be exposed to engineering challenges in developing microfluidic platforms and electronics as well as emerging challenges in analytical science.  Potential presentation venues include the ACS National Meeting and the American Society of Mass Spectrometry Annual Meeting

[i]   Qi, A.; Friend, J.R.; Yeo, L.Y.; Morton, D.A.V.; McIntosh, M.P.; Spiccia, L., 2009, “Miniature inhalation therapy platform using surface acoustic wave microfluidic atomization,” Lab on a Chip, 9:2184-2193.

[ii] Ho, J.; Tan, M.K.; Go, D.B.; Yeo, L.Y.; Friend, J.R.; Chang, H.-C., 2011, “Paper-based microfluidic surface acoustic wave sample delivery and ionization source for rapid and sensitive ambient mass spectrometry,” Analytical Chemistry, 83:3260-3266.