Lab Infrastructure

The Integrated Systems Lab is a research facility in Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering Department in The Ohio State University’s Main Campus.  The laboratory located in Rooms W360 and W363 has a combined floor area of 1300 sq.ft and has the following specialized equipment.

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HEKA ElProScan (ELP3) Scanning Electrochemical Workstation

HEKA ELP3 is a scanning electrochemical workstation with integrated inverted microscope optics for performing simultaneous fluorescence and electrochemical measurements. The microscope optics is capable to observe a sample with transmitted light imaging or fluorescence imaging techniques simultaneously. The motorized focus drive is controlled using the same software that controls the workstation and provides high fidelity to monitor nanoscale electroactive polymers and biological samples developed through this work. One of the most unique features of this workstation is the shearforce imaging attachment. This allows for simultaneous imaging of surface topography, electrochemical activity and fluorescence imaging. Please feel to write to if you will like to access this workstation for characterizing electroactive samples.

EMS Quorumtech Sputter Coater

EMS150R ES is a compact rotary pumped combined sputter coater and carbon evaporator. Key features of this equipment are:

  • Metal sputtering or carbon evaporation – or both – in one space saving design
  • Rotary pumped sputter coating – allows sputtering of a wide range of non-oxidising (noble) metals, such as gold (Au), platinum (Pt), silver (Ag) and palladium (Pd)
  • Carbon fibre coating – ideal for SEM carbon coating applications (eg EDS and WDS)
  • Advanced design carbon evaporation gun – simple operation, reproducible results
  • Glow discharge option – for modification of sample surface properties (eg hydrophobic to hydrophilic conversion) or for cleaning / removal of contaminating surface residues

PARSTAT-4000 Potentiostat/Galvanostat + Electrochemical Impedance Analyzer

PARSTAT Potentiostat/Galvanostat and Electrochemical Impedance analyzer is a modular low-current, low-noise analyzer that can perform all electrochemical measurements required for characterization of lipid bilayer membranes with proteins, conducting polymer membranes, energy storage functions of large surface area membranes and fabrication of these membranes using electrochemical methods. The PARSTAT 4000’s hardware is capable of
+/- 10V scan/pulse range, +/-4A compliance current, and built-in EIS measurements up to 5MHz. Electrochemical Impedance Spectroscopy (EIS) capability is standard on every PARSTAT 4000. The built-in FRA has a frequency range of 10uHz to 5MHz and can measure impedances from Tera-ohms to micro-ohms under the proper experimental conditions and setup. The analyzer has a floating ground option and allows simultaneous access to the different layers in the integrated (bioderived and conducting polymer) membrane proposed in this proposal. The analyzer is connected to a Dell Precision T3500 desktop running Windows 7 over USB. The VersaStudio software that controls the PARSTAT-4000 from the desktop can be used for a wide range of electrochemical studies including cyclic and linear sweep voltammetry, sampled DC and AC voltammetry, potentiostatic stripping analysis, chrono -amperometry, -coulometry, and -potentiometry and many other techniques.

Warner Instruments BC-535 Bilayer Clamp Analyzer

The bilayer clamp analyzer (BC-535) from Warner Instruments is an integrated platform for characterizing a bilayer lipid membrane and monitoring protein activity. This workstation comprises of a patch clamp analyzer, faraday cage with active vibration isolation table and holder assembly. The patch clamp analyzer is equipped with an 8-pole Bessel filter and a headstage (with feedback) with two modes of operation (a high current mode with 500 MΩ feedback and a low current mode with 50 GΩ feedback) with femtoampere (fA) resolution. The command input to the bilayer membrane assembly can be controlled from an external input accurate to 5 µV. This system is interfaced with a dSpace 1104 data acquisition for developing various ion transport characterization methods.

 Sutter P-2000 micropipette puller

Sutter P-2000 micropiplette puller is a specialized CO2 laser-based pipette puller that can use 1mm glass capillary tube and pull them into nanometer scale pipettes for characterizing electrochemical surfaces. This programmable puller allows for storing heating and pulling profiles for repeating pull procedures. This pipette puller in conjunction with the HEKA scanning electrochemical microscope will provide unique capabilities for characterizing electrochemical surfaces, electrochemical nanolithography and nanofabrication.

Deionized water supply

A Milli-Q Direct 16 water purifier system that provides Type-1 water (200L/day) and Type 3 water (350L/day) is available for polishing water that will be used for the experimental work discussed in this proposal.

Ultra-low temperature (-86oC) freezer

An ultra-low temperature freezer that can maintain -86oC is also available in the PI’s lab for storing proteins and peptides for months.

4oC refrigerator

A laboratory refrigerator is available in the PI’s lab for storing reagents and other chemicals.

Data Acquisition Systems

dSpace 1104 data acquisition board is available in the PI’s lab for general purpose data acquisition and control applications. dSpace 1104 PCI board is installed on the motherboard of a Dell Precision T3500 desktop and is connected to a breakout box. The breakout box and the board provide connections to acquire 8 analog channels (4 non-multiplexed each with 12-bit ADC and 4 multiplexed with a shared16-bit ADC) and can acquire data with 40ns resolution. This system has 20-bit parallel I/O with TTL input/output levels for designing characterization experiments that will be used in this project.

This hardware interfaces with MATLAB® Coder and Simulink coder for developing characterization platforms. The PI has 10+ years of experience in using dSpace systems for data acquisition and control experiments and has developed novel experimental platforms to characterize biological membranes and electroactive polymers.

General Purpose Hardware for Biochemistry experiments

  • Mettler Toledo* Excellence Plus XP Analytical Balance (10µg readability)
  • Fume hood
  • Hot plate with stirrer (Fisher Scientific)
  • Two sutter 3-axis motorized micromanipulators with 60nm stepping accuracy
  • Several DAQ systems from National Instruments