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The interaction of solid particles with various surfaces has been experiencing growing interest in the area of nanotechnology, colloidal science and biology. In this paper interactions of solid particles with various surfaces using piezoelectric thickness shear mode (TSM) sensors have been studied. A mechanical model has been presented to evaluate the effect of particle loading on the behavior of a TSM sensor. The main sources contributing to the interaction, such as Van der Waals force, gravitational force and electrostatic force, are discussed. Experimental results have shown that the resonant frequency of a TSM sensor depends on the coupling conditions of micro- or nano- particles loaded on the surfaces of a TSM sensor, which is predicted by the theoretical model. The results show that this TSM sensor technique can provide the information of the coupling, such as the binding energy between the particles and the sensor surfaces, and may promote the applications of TSM sensors in characterizing the properties of the loaded particles.
Date of Conference: 4-8 May 2003