MSE Research Project Database

Novel mechanisms for continuous micro/nanoparticle manipulation

Project Leader: David Collins
Primary Contact: David Collins (
Keywords: biomedical engineering; computational fluid dynamics; micro-fluidics; nanotechnology; optimisation
Disciplines: Biomedical Engineering,Mechanical Engineering

Separations science is vitally important for a range of biomedical and industrial processes. Filtering contaminants from a feedstock, for example, can prevent fouling and lead to desirable outcomes in chemical processing. Exosomes, a nano-scale signalling intercellular signalling vesicle, are also emerging as a novel method for diagnosis and treatment, but are typically too small to handle efficiently. Conventional filtration is lossy, and leads to clogging over time. 

Alternatively, non-contact acoustic filtration permits high-throughput filtration without the potential for particle accumulation. In this process, a high frequency acoustic field is produced that creates forces on suspended particles to direct their motion without the need for a physical filtration barrier. 

Using a novel approach to creating this acoustic fields developed by the supervisor, the prospective student will investigate and optimise systems for high throughput nano- and micro-particle filtration. The student will have the opportunity to work across different centers in Melbourne and to collaborate with international research groups in the US and Europe. 


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