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Membrane nanopumps based on porous alumina thin films, membranes therefor and a method of fabricating such membranes

Authors Sheng, Ping
Wang, Ning
Miao, Jianying
Yang, Zhi-Yu
Yang, Shihe
Zhang, Xinyi
Issue Date 2009-06-02
Source US Patent , 7,540,717 B2, 2009
Summary A technique has been developed to fabricate micro- or nanopumps based on porous alumina thin films. The main body of the nanopump consists of a porous alumina thin film (containing nano-sized channels of about 40-300 nm in diameter) with conductive surfaces (e.g. Au coating layers) on both sides of the film. Through the fabrication of nanochannels in (the alumina films) and the subsequent annealing and surface activation processes, high-efficiency micro- or nanopumps can be made. The nanofluidic flow through the nanochannels of the alumina thin films is driven by an electric field with no moving parts. The flow rate (up to 50 millilitres/(min·cm<sup>2</sup> )) of water through the alumina thin film can be continuously tuned through the intensity of the electric field, i.e., the DC electric potential applied across the nanochannels.
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Language English
Format Patent
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