Terahertz biochip based on optoelectronic devices

Ja Yu Lu, Li Jin Chen, Tzeng Fu Kao, Hsu Hao Chang, An Shyi Liu, Yi Chun Yu, Ruey Beei Wu, Wei Sheng Liu, Jen Inn Chyi, Ci Ling Pan, Ming Cheng Tsai, Chi Kuang Sun

Research output: Contribution to journalConference articlepeer-review

2 Scopus citations


The accurate detection of minute amounts of chemical and biological substances has been a major goal in bioanalytical technology throughout the twentieth century [1]. Fluorescence dye labeling detection remains the effective analysis method [2,3], but it modifies the surroundings of molecules and lowering the precision of detection [4-7], An alternative label free detecting tool with little disturbance of target molecules is highly desired. Theoretical calculations and experiments have demonstrated that many biomolecules have intrinsic resonance due to vibration or rotation level transitions [8,9], allowing terahertz (THz)-probing technique as a potential tool for the label-free and noninvasive detection of biomolecules. In this paper, we first ever combined the THz optoelectronic technique with biochip technology to realize THz biosensing. By transferring the edge-coupled photonic transmitter into a thin glass substrate and by integrating with a polyethylene based biochip channel, near field THz detection of the biomolecules is demonstrated. By directly acquiring the absorption micro-spectrum in the THz range, different boiomecules can then be identified according to their THz fingerprints. For preliminary studies, the capability to identity different illicit drug powders is successfully demonstrated. This novel biochip sensing system has the advantages including label-free detection, high selectivity, high sensitivity, ease for sample preparation, and ease to parallel integrate with other biochip functionality modules. Our demonstrated detection capability allows specifying various illicit drug powders with weight of nano-gram, which also enables rapid identification with minute amounts of other important molecules including DNA, biochemical agents in terrorism warfare, explosives, viruses, and toxics.

Original languageEnglish
Article number60130I
JournalProceedings of SPIE - The International Society for Optical Engineering
StatePublished - 2005
EventOptoelectronic Devices: Physics, Fabrication, and Application II - Boston, MA, United States
Duration: 24 Oct 200525 Oct 2005


  • Absorption spectrum
  • Biochip
  • Biomolecule
  • Photonic transmitter
  • Spectroscopy
  • Terahertz


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