Date of Award

Fall 2012

Document Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)


Micro and Nanoscale Systems

First Advisor

Neil D. Crews


The main goal of the work was to establish a wholesome picture off all relevant processes for a sample-in, answer out genetic system and to integrate the whole process on a one step device from sample collection to final result. The genetic analysis process consists of ideally three steps: sample preparation, chemical reaction, and analysis. Each of the steps is different and requires a specific environment, where sample preparation might use additives, they might later interfere with the reaction itself or lead to misleading results in the analysis phase. It was found to be quite a challenging process to synchronize the three without compromising each other efficiency.

The design of the devices was a gradual process with an iterative approach. The initial trials were focused on enabling on-chip PCR with spatial melting analysis. In the later work, sample preparation was embedded into the process, though at the cost of reaching the used fabrication method limitations. Apart from the challenges of integrating the process into one complete entity, the gradual enhancement of the system in respect to size and performance consistency was pursued. A range of applications and variations to the devices were fabricated each representing a unique solution to many modern-day problems.