This thesis examines the possibility of using an inductance-based method of detecting ferromagnetically tagged bio-molecules. A proof-of-concept experiment was conducted using a coil wrapped around a glass capillary in conjunction with a simple oscillator circuit. Simulations were conducted comparing the inductance value of various coil designs and how they change when an iron sphere was introduced inside the coil. A suitable coil design was determined, and a fabrication process is developed to build a micro-scale coil with a microfluidic channel running through it. This thesis explores the design optimization using computer simulations along with a set of preliminary feasibility results. With the optimum coil design, the simulation results indicate that a ferromagnetic sphere with a radius of 0.5 μm could be detected.
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Thesis advisor: Parameswaran, Ash M.
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