We present a novel liquid metal based temperature sensor. This sensor utilizes thermal expansion property when temperature changes. The liquid metal (mercury) is used for electrical interconnect between capacitors as it expands through a microfluidic channel. Among various temperature sensing methods, platinum resistive thin film devices  and acoustic wave devices  are commonly being used. The platinum thin film based device utilizes a unique property that the resistant of the thin film changes with respect to temperature variation. A complete sensor can be realized in a balanced wheat stone bridge. When the temperature changes, the resistance of the thin film changes correspondingly and the bridge is no longer balanced. There is a current flow through the bridge upon the amount of temperature variation. However, the current brings a self-heating problem, which negatively affects the performance. On the other hand, the acoustic wave device utilizes a property that a resonance frequency shifts per temperature variation. There are many difficulties in calibrating this device and, in liquid environment, there is a significant drop of q factor , which decreases the sensitivity of the sensor. Our new device can overcome many difficulties described above.
- Nanotechnology Institute
A Novel Liquid Metal and Microfluidic Based Temperature Sensor
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Sai Sumanth, P, & Kwon, JW. "A Novel Liquid Metal and Microfluidic Based Temperature Sensor." Proceedings of the ASME 2008 6th International Conference on Nanochannels, Microchannels, and Minichannels. ASME 2008 6th International Conference on Nanochannels, Microchannels, and Minichannels. Darmstadt, Germany. June 23–25, 2008. pp. 1897-1898. ASME. https://doi.org/10.1115/ICNMM2008-62161
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