Dimension-reconfigurable bubble film nanochannel for wetting based sensing

Yu Ma*, Miao Sun, Albert van den Berg, Jan C.T. Eijkel, Yanbo Xie

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

16 Citations (Scopus)
57 Downloads (Pure)


Dimensions and surface properties are the predominant factors for the applications of nanofluidic devices. Here we use a thin liquid film as a nanochannel by inserting a gas bubble in a glass capillary, a technique we name bubble-based film nanofluidics. The height of the film nanochannel can be regulated by the Debye length and wettability, while the length independently changed by applied pressure. The film nanochannel behaves functionally identically to classical solid state nanochannels, as ion concentration polarizations. Furthermore, the film nanochannels can be used for label-free immunosensing, by principle of wettability change at the solid interface. The optimal sensitivity for the biotin-streptavidin reaction is two orders of magnitude higher than for the solid state nanochannel, suitable for a full range of electrolyte concentrations. We believe that the film nanochannel represents a class of nanofluidic devices that is of interest for fundamental studies and also can be widely applied, due to its reconfigurable dimensions, low cost, ease of fabrication and multiphase interfaces.
Original languageEnglish
Article number814
JournalNature communications
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 10 Feb 2020


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