ZnO film based surface acoustic wave micro-pump

Xiaoye Du*, Yongqing Fu, Swee Ching Tan, Jack Luo, Andrew Flewitt, Sunglyul Maeng, Sang Hyeob Kim, Youngjin Choi, Dae Sik Lee, Rae Man Park, Bill Milne

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

11 Citations (Scopus)


In this study, a micro-pump unit based on surface acoustic wave (SAW) on piezoelectric ZnO film is designed and fabricated as a micro-fluidic device. It employs a mechanical wave, which is generated electrically using an aluminum interdigital transducer (IDT), and propagates on the surface of the ZnO film. The ZnO film was used in this study because it has a high electromechanical coefficient and an excellent bonding with various substrate materials, in particular silicon. The sputtering parameters for ZnO film deposition have been optimized, and the ZnO films with different thickness from 1 micron to 5.5 microns were prepared. The film properties have been characterized using different methods, such as scanning electron microscopy, X-ray diffraction and atomic force microscopy. Aluminum IDT with a finger width and spacing of 8 microns was patterned on the ZnO film using a lift-off process. The frequency generated was measured using a network analyzer, and it varies from 130 MHz to 180 MHz as a function of film thickness. A signal generator was used to generate the frequency with a power amplifier to amplify the signal, which was then applied to aluminum IDT to generate the surface acoustic wave. If a liquid droplet exists on the surface carrying the acoustic wave, the energy and the momentum of the SAW will be coupled into the fluid, causing the liquid to vibrate and move on film surface. The strength of this movement is determined by the applied voltage and frequency. The volume of the liquid drop loaded on the SAW device in this study is of several hundreds of nanoliters. The movement of the liquid inside the droplet and also on the ZnO film surface can be demonstrated. The performance of ZnO SAW device was characterized as a function of film thickness.

Original languageEnglish
Article number012047
JournalJournal of Physics: Conference Series
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 1 Sept 2007
Externally publishedYes


Dive into the research topics of 'ZnO film based surface acoustic wave micro-pump'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this