Molecular Aspects of Transport in Thin Films of Controlled Architecture

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Our laboratory focuses on developing spatially localized chemistries which can produce structures of controlled architecture on the supermolecular length scale -- structures which allow us to control the motion of molecular species with high spatial resolution, ultimately on nanometer length scales. Specifically, nanocapillary array membranes (NCAMs) contain an array of nanometer diameter pores connecting vertically separated microfluidic channels. NCAMs can manipulate samples with sub-femtoliter characteristic volumes and attomole sample amounts and are opening the field of chemical analysis of mass-limited samples, because they are capable of digital control of fluid switching down to sub-attoliter volumes; extension of analytical “unit operations” ... continued below

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Bohn, Paul W. April 16, 2009.

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Our laboratory focuses on developing spatially localized chemistries which can produce structures of controlled architecture on the supermolecular length scale -- structures which allow us to control the motion of molecular species with high spatial resolution, ultimately on nanometer length scales. Specifically, nanocapillary array membranes (NCAMs) contain an array of nanometer diameter pores connecting vertically separated microfluidic channels. NCAMs can manipulate samples with sub-femtoliter characteristic volumes and attomole sample amounts and are opening the field of chemical analysis of mass-limited samples, because they are capable of digital control of fluid switching down to sub-attoliter volumes; extension of analytical “unit operations” down to sub-femtomole sample sizes; and exerting spatiotemporal control over fluid mixing to enable studies of reaction dynamics. Digital flow switching mediated by nanocapillary array membranes can be controlled by bias, ionic strength, or pore diameter and is being studied by observing the temporal characteristics of transport across a single nanopore in thin PMMA membranes. The control of flow via nanopore surface characteristics, charge density and functional group presentation, is being studied by coupled conductivity and laser-induced fluorescence (LIF) measurements. Reactive mixing experiments previously established low millisecond mixing times for NCAM-mediated fluid transfer, and this has been exploited to demonstrate capture of mass-limited target species by Au colloids. Voltage and thermally-activated polymer switches have been developed for active control of transport in NCAMs. Thermally-switchable and size-selective transport was achieved by grafting poly(N-isopropylacrylamide) brushes onto the exterior surface of a Au-coated polycarbonate track-etched membrane, while the voltage-gated properties of poly(hydroxyethylmethacrylate) were characterized dynamically. Electrophoretic separations have been coupled to analyte sampling both by LIF and mass spectrometry. Detection of electrophoresis separation products by electrospray mass spectrometry was achieved through direct interfacing to an electrospray mass spectrometer. Pb(II) interactions with the DNAzyme have been realized in an NCAM-coupled integrated microfluidic structure allowing cation separations to be coupled to molecular beacon detection motifs for the determination of Pb(II) in an electroplating sludge reference material. By changing the DNAzyme to select for other compounds of interest, it is possible to incorporate multiple sensing systems within a single device, thereby achieving great flexibility.

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  • Report No.: DOE/ER/13949
  • Grant Number: FG02-88ER13949
  • DOI: 10.2172/951203 | External Link
  • Office of Scientific & Technical Information Report Number: 951203
  • Archival Resource Key: ark:/67531/metadc934821

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  • April 16, 2009

Added to The UNT Digital Library

  • Nov. 13, 2016, 7:26 p.m.

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  • Dec. 12, 2016, 8:55 p.m.

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Bohn, Paul W. Molecular Aspects of Transport in Thin Films of Controlled Architecture, report, April 16, 2009; United States. (digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc934821/: accessed October 21, 2017), University of North Texas Libraries, Digital Library, digital.library.unt.edu; crediting UNT Libraries Government Documents Department.