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Sensors 2011, 11(5), 4702-4720; doi:10.3390/s110504702
Article

Validation of a Phase-Mass Characterization Concept and Interface for Acoustic Biosensors

1
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1
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1
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2
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2
 and
1,*
1 Phenomena Wave Group, Electronic Engineering Department, Universitat Politècnica de València, Spain 2 Inter-University Research Institute for Bioengineering and Human Centered Technology, Universitat Politècnica de València, Spain
* Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 23 February 2011 / Revised: 6 April 2011 / Accepted: 22 April 2011 / Published: 28 April 2011
(This article belongs to the Section Biosensors)
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Abstract

Acoustic wave resonator techniques are widely used in in-liquid biochemical applications. The main challenges remaining are the improvement of sensitivity and limit of detection, as well as multianalysis capabilities and reliability. The sensitivity improvement issue has been addressed by increasing the sensor frequency, using different techniques such as high fundamental frequency quartz crystal microbalances (QCMs), surface generated acoustic waves (SGAWs) and film bulk acoustic resonators (FBARs). However, this sensitivity improvement has not been completely matched in terms of limit of detection. The decrease on frequency stability due to the increase of the phase noise, particularly in oscillators, has made it impossible to increase the resolution. A new concept of sensor characterization at constant frequency has been recently proposed based on the phase/mass sensitivity equation: ∆φ/∆m ≈ −1/mL, where mL is the liquid mass perturbed by the resonator. The validation of the new concept is presented in this article. An immunosensor application for the detection of a low molecular weight pollutant, the insecticide carbaryl, has been chosen as a validation model.
Keywords: acoustic biosensors; sensitivity; microbalance; high resolution; phase characterization; high fundamental frequency QCM acoustic biosensors; sensitivity; microbalance; high resolution; phase characterization; high fundamental frequency QCM
This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.

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Montagut, Y.; García, J.V.; Jiménez, Y.; March, C.; Montoya, Á.; Arnau, A. Validation of a Phase-Mass Characterization Concept and Interface for Acoustic Biosensors. Sensors 2011, 11, 4702-4720.

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