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Biosensor basics | Biosensor types | Biosensor manufacturers

This article covers Biosensor basics and Biosensor types. It describes different types of Biosensor viz. Piezoelectric sensor,Electrochemical sensor and optical sensor. It mentions manufacturers of Biosensors.

Definition:The analytical device which is used for detection of analyte and combines it with physico-chemical detector or transduer is known as Biosensor. The figure-1 depicts working of such biosensor.

Following are the Biosensor types which are explained below.:
• Piezoelectric sensor
• Electrochemical sensor
• Optical sensor

Biosensor Working Principle

Biosensor
Figure-1: Biosensor working Principle

Biosensor consists of following components.
1. Bio-receptor
2. Transducer
3. Electronics circuit and display

Following points summarize working of a Biosensor.
• It detects the input physical change due to biological element.
• The transducer element transforms the physical change into appropriate electrical signal.
• The electrical signal is amplified, processed and given to display in user desired format.

The biological material is im-mobilized by conventional methods. This immobilized biological material is in contact with the transducer. The analyte binds to biological material to form bound analyte. This consecutively produces electronic response which can be measured.

Biosensor Types

Biosensor types

Biosensors can be categorized as per biological element or transduction element used. Biological elements typically used are enzymes, micro-organisms, antibodies, biological tissue, organelles etc. The method of transduction depends on type of physicochemical change as a result of sensing event. Primarily biosensors based on transducer element are mass based, electrochemical biosensors and optical biosensors.

• Mass based Biosensors include Magnetoelectric, Piezoelectric (QCM-Quartz crystal microbalance, SAW ) etc.
• Electrochemical Biosensors include potentiometric sensors, Amperometric sensors, Impedimetric sensors, conductometric sensors etc.
• Optical Biosensors include SPR (Surface Plasmon Resonance), Raman & FTIR, Fiber optics etc.

Following section describes working principle based on different Biosensor types.

Piezoelectric sensor:
This mass based biosensors work based on acoustics principle i.e. sound vibrations. These sensors produce electrical signal based on applied mechanical force. In this mode, sensor modules are attached to piezo-electric surface which provide interactions between analyte and sensing molecules which set up mechanical vibrations. Here piezoelectric sensor functions as mass to frequency transducer which translates electrical signal in proportion to the amount of the analyte.

Electrochemical sensor:
In this Biosensor type, membrane holds sensing molecules and excludes interfering species from analyte solution. The sensing molecules react with compounds to be detected which sparks electrical signal in proportion to concentration of analyte. Based on this working principle, the electrochemical biosensor employs potentiometric, amperometric and impedimetric transducers. They convert chemical information into measurable amperometric signal.

Optical sensor:
In this biosensor type, optical fiber allows detection of analytes on basis of absorption, fluorescence or light scattering. Optical biosensors allow multiple analytes to be detected by using different monitoring wavelengths. Various parameters such as changes in wavelength, time, wave propagation, intensity, distribution of spectrum or polarity of the light are used in optical biosensors for measurement purpose.

Biosensor Manufacturers

Following table mentions popular manufacturers of Biosensor.

Manufacturers Description
MediaTek The company has introduced MT6381 Smartphone Biosensor for health measurements.
BioDot Custom biosensor manufacturer
SD Biosensor, Inc. South Korea
Telkonet, Inc. Waukesha, WI
Pinnacle Technology, Inc. Lawrence, KS
Eastprint, Inc. North Andover, MA

Types of Sensors and Transducers

Proximity Sensor
Occupancy Sensor vs Motion Sensor
LVDT and RVDT sensor
Position, displacement and level sensor
force sensor and strain sensor
temperature sensor
pressure sensor
Humidity sensor
MEMS sensor
Touch sensor
Haptic sensor
Wireless sensor



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