Acoustic Levitation Patents (Class 73/570.5)
  • Patent number: 11401542
    Abstract: An acoustically actuated droplet apparatus includes a first sound source, a second sound source, a thread, two fixed columns and at least one droplet transporter. The first sound source includes a first emitting surface. The second sound source includes a second emitting surface, wherein the second emitting surface and the first emitting surface are arranged opposite to each other. The thread is coaxially passed through and placed between the first sound source and the second sound source, wherein the thread is hydrophobic. The two fixed columns are connected to two ends of the thread, wherein the first sound source and the second sound source are placed between the two fixed columns. The droplet transporter includes a tubing, a droplet dispenser and a solution container, wherein the droplet dispenser is connected with the solution container by the tubing, and the droplet dispenser is placed near the thread.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 23, 2019
    Date of Patent: August 2, 2022
    Assignee: National Tsing Hua University
    Inventors: Pawel Lukasz Urban, Tzu-Hsien Yang
  • Patent number: 11287362
    Abstract: The present invention is a method and apparatus for acoustically manipulating one or more particles.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 18, 2019
    Date of Patent: March 29, 2022
    Assignee: Triad National Security, LLC
    Inventors: Gregory Kaduchak, Michael D. Ward
  • Patent number: 11207656
    Abstract: A particle control method configured prevent an extremely small quantity of particles descending on a stream of a laminar flow in a clean zone through which the laminar flow flows (as in a RABS or isolator device) from descending to a specific position or to guide the particles so as to have them descend to a specific position by controlling movement of the particles. [Solution] A particle descent position is separated away from a board surface of the oscillation board by using an acoustic radiation pressure generated by prompting ultrasonic vibration of the oscillation board disposed with a board surface substantially in parallel with a flow direction of the laminar flow. Moreover, by using a node of a standing wave field generated by prompting the ultrasonic vibration of two oscillation boards disposed with the board surfaces faced with each other, the particle is guided to a direction of a node of a standing wave field.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: June 25, 2020
    Date of Patent: December 28, 2021
    Inventor: Koji Kawasaki
  • Patent number: 10976234
    Abstract: The present invention is a method and apparatus for acoustic focusing hardware and implementations.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: February 5, 2018
    Date of Patent: April 13, 2021
    Assignee: Life Technologies Corporation
    Inventors: Gregory Kaduchak, Michael Dennis Ward
  • Patent number: 10646870
    Abstract: A microfluidic chip assembly having a plurality of microfluidic flow channels is provided. Each channel has a switching region. The microfluidic chip may further include at least one surface acoustic wave generator configured to generate a pressure pulse in the switching regions of the channels to selectively deflect particles in the flow. Attenuation elements and/or channel configurations may be used to prevent acoustic signals from interfering with neighboring switching regions. Alternatively, a microfluidic particle processing system may include a microfluidic chip assembly, a particle processing instrument, and a coupling element. The surface acoustic wave generator may be provided on the particle processing instrument. The microfluidic chip assembly may be configured for operative engagement, via the coupling element, with the particle processing instrument.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: December 22, 2017
    Date of Patent: May 12, 2020
    Assignee: CYTONOME/ST, LLC
    Inventors: Erin Koksal, Jack Lapidas, Jeanne Tanner
  • Patent number: 10537831
    Abstract: The present invention includes an apparatus and corresponding method for concentrating analytes within a fluid flowing through a tube using acoustic radiation pressure. The apparatus includes a function generator that outputs a radio frequency electrical signal to a transducer that transforms the radio frequency electric signal to an acoustic signal and couples the acoustic signal to the tube. The acoustic signal is converted within the tube to acoustic pressure that concentrates the analytes within the fluid.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: June 3, 2015
    Date of Patent: January 21, 2020
    Assignee: Triad National Security, LLC
    Inventors: Gregory Kaduchak, Greg Goddard, Gary Salzman, Dipen Sinha, John C Martin, Christopher Kwiatkowski, Steven Graves
  • Patent number: 10210858
    Abstract: A novel system and method based on three-dimensional acoustic-manipulation technology is disclosed. By changing the distribution of an acoustic-potential field generated by ultrasonic phased arrays, objects can be levitated and animated. Various distributions of acoustic-potential fields can be generated in accordance with the present invention, including acoustic-potential fields having arbitrary shapes, including any three-dimensional shapes. One or more ultrasonic phased arrays surrounding a workspace can be used to generate standing waves of various shapes to provide the acoustic-potential fields. Objects can be suspended at the nodes of the acoustic-potential field so that the ultrasound distribution (i.e., the desired arbitrary shape) is visualized. The system and method can be used to realize floating screen or mid-air raster graphics, mid-air vector graphics, and interaction with levitated objects. The system and method can also be used in other applications, including cleaning applications.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: June 30, 2015
    Date of Patent: February 19, 2019
    Assignee: Pixie Dust Technologies, Inc.
    Inventors: Yoichi Ochiai, Takayuki Hoshi, Jun Rekimoto
  • Patent number: 9360164
    Abstract: A MEMS-based particle manipulation system which uses a particle manipulation stage and a sensor to detect when the sample volume is exhausted or nearly exhausted. The sensor sends a signal to a fluid control means that reverses the pressure between one of the output channels and the input channels, to keep the surfaces wet with a volume of the sample fluid. This volume can be maintained in the channel until an operator intervenes, or it can be repeatedly shuttled back and forth between the input channel and an output channel. By keeping the channels wet, material from the sample stream does not become adhered to the channel walls, which might otherwise irreversibly change or damage the device.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: January 29, 2014
    Date of Patent: June 7, 2016
    Assignee: Owl biomedical, Inc.
    Inventors: John S Foster, Nicholas C. Martinez, Kevin E. Shields, Jaquelin K. Spong
  • Patent number: 9170186
    Abstract: Systems, methods, and devices are provided for manipulating objects in a liquid using a pulsed acoustic field that is modulated in amplitude. The amplitude modulated pulsed acoustic field may form the objects into a layer or layers. The objects may be colloidal objects having an average size of about 50 nm to about 5 ?m, or a mixture of colloidal and non-colloidal objects.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: June 6, 2012
    Date of Patent: October 27, 2015
    Assignees: Centre National De La Recherche Scientifique, Ecole Superieure De Physique Et De Chimie Industrielles De La Ville De Paris
    Inventors: Mauricio Hoyos, Luz Angélica Castro Camacho
  • Patent number: 9074979
    Abstract: The present invention includes an apparatus and corresponding method for concentrating analytes within a fluid flowing through a tube using acoustic radiation pressure. The apparatus includes a function generator that outputs a radio frequency electrical signal to a transducer that transforms the radio frequency electric signal to an acoustic signal and couples the acoustic signal to the tube. The acoustic signal is converted within the tube to acoustic pressure that concentrates the analytes within the fluid.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 14, 2012
    Date of Patent: July 7, 2015
    Assignee: Los Alamos National Security, LLC
    Inventors: Gregory Kaduchak, Greg Goddard, Gary Salzman, Dipen Sinha, John C. Martin, Christopher Kwiatkowski, Steven Graves
  • Patent number: 9038467
    Abstract: The present invention is a method and apparatus for acoustically manipulating one or more particles.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: August 10, 2012
    Date of Patent: May 26, 2015
    Assignee: Los Alamos National Security, LLC
    Inventors: Gregory Kaduchak, Michael D Ward
  • Patent number: 8846408
    Abstract: A method for optimizing particle throughput in a particle analyzer includes determining an optimal concentration of particles in a sample for achieving a user defined coincidence rate; adjusting the concentration of the particles in the sample to the determined optimal concentration to achieve the user defined coincidence rate; acoustically focusing the particles in the particle analyzer; adjusting a flow rate of the particles to achieve a user defined transit time of the particles; and analyzing at least some of the particles with an interrogation source.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 26, 2008
    Date of Patent: September 30, 2014
    Assignee: Life Technologies Corporation
    Inventors: Michael D. Ward, Gregory Kaduchak
  • Patent number: 8783109
    Abstract: The present invention includes an apparatus and corresponding method for concentrating analytes within a fluid flowing through a tube using acoustic radiation pressure. The apparatus includes a function generator that outputs a radio frequency electrical signal to a transducer that transforms the radio frequency electric signal to an acoustic signal and couples the acoustic signal to the tube. The acoustic signal is converted within the tube to acoustic pressure that concentrates the analytes within the fluid.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 31, 2007
    Date of Patent: July 22, 2014
    Assignee: Los Alamos National Sercurity, LLC
    Inventors: Gregory Kaduchak, Greg Goddard, Gary Salzman, Dipen Sinha, John C. Martin, Christopher Kwiatkowski, Steven Graves
  • Patent number: 8714014
    Abstract: An acoustic focusing capillary includes a capillary coupled to at least one vibration source possessing a groove. A method of manufacturing such an acoustic focusing capillary includes providing a capillary and a vibration source, machining a groove into the vibration source, and coupling the vibration source to the capillary at the groove. Another method relates to focusing a particle stream and includes flowing a sheath fluid into an outer confine of a capillary, flowing a particle stream into a central core of the capillary, and acoustically focusing the particle stream by applying acoustic radiation pressure to the particle stream at a first location along the capillary. The particle stream may be further focused by hydrodynamically focusing it at a second location along the capillary downstream of the first location.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 11, 2008
    Date of Patent: May 6, 2014
    Assignee: Life Technologies Corporation
    Inventors: Gregory Kaduchak, Michael D. Ward
  • Patent number: 8573060
    Abstract: Examples of the present invention include apparatus and methods for particle focusing, for particles within a fluid sample. An example apparatus, which may be a microfluidic device, comprises a substrate, a channel receiving the fluid sample, and at least one surface acoustic wave (SAW) generator. The SAW generator may comprise electrodes supported by the substrate. In some examples, the channel has a particle focusing region located near a region of the substrate surface in which a SAW is generated. Particles are concentrated within one or more particle focus regions of the sample flow (the particle focus regions being appreciably narrower than the channel dimensions) by the effects of the SAW. As an example, a pair of SAW generators can be used to generate a standing surface acoustic wave (SSAW) that is used for particle focusing.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: December 4, 2009
    Date of Patent: November 5, 2013
    Assignee: The Penn State Research Foundation
    Inventors: Tony Jun Huang, Jingie Shi
  • Patent number: 8528406
    Abstract: One or more of the embodiments of the present invention provide for a method of non-contact particle manipulation and control of particle spacing along an axis which includes axial and radial acoustic standing wave fields. Particles are suspended in an aqueous solution, and this solution then flows into the cylindrical flow channel. While the solution flows through the flow channel, the outer structure of the flow channel is vibrated at a resonant frequency, causing a radial acoustic standing wave field to form inside the flow channel in the solution. These radial acoustic standing waves focus the particles suspended in the solution to the center axis of the cylindrical flow channel. At the same time, a transducer is used to create an axial acoustic standing wave field in the flow channel parallel to the axis of the flow channel.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 24, 2007
    Date of Patent: September 10, 2013
    Assignee: Los Alamos National Security, LLP
    Inventors: Gregory Russ Goddard, Gregory Kaduchak, James Hubert Jett, Steven Wayde Graves
  • Publication number: 20130047728
    Abstract: A method and apparatus for manipulating particles. The apparatus comprising an ultrasound source for providing a variable ultrasound signal within a region of interest, and a controller connected to the ultrasound source such that it provides a control signal to the ultrasound source. The variable ultrasound signal creates a pressure field within the region of interest, the shape and/or position of which can be altered by changing the control signal input to the ultrasound source such that a particle within the region of interest will move in response to changes in the pressure field.
    Type: Application
    Filed: September 21, 2010
    Publication date: February 28, 2013
    Applicants: UNIVERSITY OF DUNDEE, UNIVERSITY OF SOUTHAMPTON, UNIVERSITY OF GLASGOW, UNIVERSITY OF BRISTOL
    Inventors: Sandy Cochran, Bruce Drinkwater, Martyn Hill, David Cumming
  • Patent number: 8266951
    Abstract: The present invention is a method and apparatus for acoustically manipulating one or more particles. Acoustically manipulated particles may be separated by size. The particles may be flowed in a flow stream and acoustic radiation pressure, which may be radial, may be applied to the flow stream. This application of acoustic radiation pressure may separate the particles. In one embodiment, the particles may be separated by size, and as a further example, the larger particles may be transported to a central axis.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 11, 2008
    Date of Patent: September 18, 2012
    Assignee: Los Alamos National Security, LLC
    Inventors: Gregory Kaduchak, Michael D. Ward
  • Patent number: 8266950
    Abstract: The present invention is a method and apparatus for acoustically manipulating one or more particles. Acoustically manipulated particles may be separated by size. The particles maybe flowed in a flow stream and acoustic radiation pressure, which may be radial, may be applied to the flow stream. This application of acoustic radiation pressure may separate the particles. In one embodiment, the particles may be separated by size, and as a further example, the larger particles may be transported to a central axis.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 11, 2008
    Date of Patent: September 18, 2012
    Assignee: Los Alamos National Security, LLP
    Inventors: Gregory Kaduchak, Michael D. Ward
  • Patent number: 8263407
    Abstract: Method and system for uniformly spacing particles in a flowing system comprising suspending particles in an elongated fluid filled cavity; exposing said cavity to an axial acoustic standing wave field, wherein said axial acoustic standing wave field drives said particles to nodal and anti-nodal positions along the center axis of said cavity to result in uniformly spaced particles; and focusing said particles to the center axis of said cavity.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 23, 2008
    Date of Patent: September 11, 2012
    Assignee: Los Alamos National Security, LLC
    Inventors: Gregory Russ Goddard, Gregory Kaduchak, James Hubert Jett, Steven Wayde Graves
  • Patent number: 8166819
    Abstract: At least one transducer of an apparatus in one example is configured to generate a first standing wave field within a cavity. The first standing wave field exerts a first field-induced force to cause a plurality of particles within the cavity to align in a desired configuration. The at least one transducer is configured to generate a second standing wave field within the cavity. The second standing wave field causes one or more of the plurality of particles within the cavity to fuse into the desired configuration.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: July 24, 2008
    Date of Patent: May 1, 2012
    Assignee: Northrop Grumman Systems Corporation
    Inventors: Sameh Sadarous Wanis, Hiroshi Komine
  • Publication number: 20110314914
    Abstract: An acoustic oscillator arrangement includes an acoustic system having at least one acoustic transmission path through it, and at least one mode. The acoustic transmission path is of variable length. A controller is provided with an amplifier and a feedback network which together provide a positive feedback oscillator for exciting a mode of the acoustic system. The feedback network comprises a non linear amplitude control element (N-LACE), a frequency dependent gain element with an electronic transfer function, and a phase compensator. The acoustic oscillator arrangement also includes an acoustic transmitter which launches an acoustic signal into the acoustic system based upon an output from the controller, and an acoustic receiver which receives an acoustic signal from the acoustic system which is fed back to the controller.
    Type: Application
    Filed: January 18, 2009
    Publication date: December 29, 2011
    Inventors: John Francis Gregg, Alexy Davison Karenowska, Constantin-Cassios Coussios
  • Publication number: 20110214982
    Abstract: Technologies are generally described for a levitation microreactor adapted to facilitate a chemical reaction. The levitation microreactor may comprise one or more levitation zones arranged in spatial communication with one another, each levitation zone including a levitator that is effective to levitate a reactant droplet. In some examples, a first levitation zone may include a first levitator effective to levitate a first reactant droplet, while a second levitation zone may include a second levitator effective to levitate a second reactant droplet. The second reactant droplet may be distinct from the first reactant droplet. Some example microreactors may further include a third levitation zone that is arranged in spatial communication with the first and second levitation zones. The third levitation zone may be effective to facilitate a chemical reaction on the first and second reactant droplets while the first and second reactant droplets are levitated to produce a product.
    Type: Application
    Filed: March 8, 2010
    Publication date: September 8, 2011
    Inventor: Jeffrey John Hagen
  • Publication number: 20100000325
    Abstract: The present invention includes an apparatus and corresponding method for concentrating analytes within a fluid flowing through a tube using acoustic radiation pressure. The apparatus includes a function generator that outputs a radio frequency electrical signal to a transducer that transforms the radio frequency electric signal to an acoustic signal and couples the acoustic signal to the tube. The acoustic signal is converted within the tube to acoustic pressure that concentrates the analytes within the fluid.
    Type: Application
    Filed: October 31, 2007
    Publication date: January 7, 2010
    Inventors: Gregory Kaduchak, Greg Goddard, Gary Salzman, Dipen Sinha, John C. Martin, Christopher Kwiatkowski, Steven Graves
  • Publication number: 20090107241
    Abstract: One or more of the embodiments of the present invention provide for a method of non-contact particle manipulation and control of particle spacing along an axis which includes axial and radial acoustic standing wave fields. Particles are suspended in an aqueous solution, and this solution then flows into the cylindrical flow channel. While the solution flows through the flow channel, the outer structure of the flow channel is vibrated at a resonant frequency, causing a radial acoustic standing wave field to form inside the flow channel in the solution. These radial acoustic standing waves focus the particles suspended in the solution to the center axis of the cylindrical flow channel. At the same time, a transducer is used to create an axial acoustic standing wave field in the flow channel parallel to the axis of the flow channel.
    Type: Application
    Filed: October 24, 2007
    Publication date: April 30, 2009
    Applicant: LOS ALAMOS NATIONAL SECURITY, LLC
    Inventors: Gregory Russ GODDARD, Gregory KADUCHAK, James Hubert JETT, Steven Wayde GRAVES
  • Patent number: 7493816
    Abstract: An aspirated smoke detector includes a flow path and a generator of acoustic waves in the flow path. Airborne particulate matter in the flow path responds to the acoustic field by particle agglomeration; the resulting larger particles flow into a photoelectric-type smoke sensor. A sensed level of particles can be processed, or compared to one or more predetermined thresholds to establish presence of one or more predetermined conditions.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 28, 2007
    Date of Patent: February 24, 2009
    Assignee: Honeywell International Inc.
    Inventors: Dragan P. Petrovic, Lorenzo Luterotti
  • Patent number: 7373805
    Abstract: There is disclosed apparatus for directing particles entrained in a fluid, comprising a chamber having a first wall, including means for generating a sound wave having a frequency v, and a second, opposite wall capable of reflecting the sound wave in which the first and second wall define a conduit for the passage of the fluid, and in which the thickness of the second wall is such that the path length of the standing wave in the second wall is a multiple of about ½ the wavelength ?r of the sound wave therein.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 18, 2003
    Date of Patent: May 20, 2008
    Assignee: The Secretary of State for Defence
    Inventors: Jeremy John Hawkes, Michael J Long, William Terence Coakley, Martin Bernard McDonnell
  • Patent number: 7340957
    Abstract: The present invention includes an apparatus and corresponding method for concentrating analytes within a fluid flowing through a tube using acoustic radiation pressure. The apparatus includes a function generator that outputs a radio frequency electrical signal to a transducer that transforms the radio frequency electric signal to an acoustic signal and couples the acoustic signal to the tube. The acoustic signal is converted within the tube to acoustic pressure that concentrates the analytes within the fluid.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 2, 2004
    Date of Patent: March 11, 2008
    Assignee: Los Alamos National Security, LLC
    Inventors: Gregory Kaduchak, Greg Goddard, Gary Salzman, Dipen Sinha, John C. Martin, Christopher Kwiatkowski, Steven Graves
  • Patent number: 7291828
    Abstract: A measuring system for determining the electromechanical coupling characteristics of a piezoceramic (PZT) vibrator, which apply photo-interrupters matrix, glass tube, and metal ball to measure the bouncing motion, wherein the system includes an elastic-bouncing tester, a height measuring circuit, an instantaneous height indicator, a microprocessor, a monitor, and a driving circuit. There is a metal ball in the elastic-bouncing tester. By measuring the bouncing height and flying time, it can determine the electromechanical coupling characteristics of a PZT vibrator or the hardness of other rigid objects.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: December 22, 2005
    Date of Patent: November 6, 2007
    Inventors: Chao-Chun Wen, Fuh-Liang Wen
  • Patent number: 6969224
    Abstract: A communication chamber defined in a body is supplied with a fluid under pressure through a pipe connected to a supply port defined in the body. The fluid under pressure is ejected from the communication chamber through fluid ejection members, which are made of a porous material and mounted on an end face of the body by a plate, toward a workpiece. The workpiece is levitated upwardly and held airborne by the fluid under pressure that is ejected toward the workpiece and the fluid under pressure that flows between the workpiece and the plate.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 30, 2004
    Date of Patent: November 29, 2005
    Assignee: SMC Kabushiki Kaisha
    Inventors: Hiroshi Miyachi, Yoshiteru Ueno, Takeshi Nishikawa, Satoshi Suzuki
  • Patent number: 6802220
    Abstract: An apparatus levitates and transports an object. The apparatus levitates the object above the surfaces of a plurality of vibrators by air pressure of sound waves that are generated by the vibrators. The apparatus has a plurality of vibration devices, each of which corresponds to one of the vibrators. Each vibration device includes a first transducer for vibrating the corresponding vibrator. Each transducer includes a super-magnetostrictive material. A common power source is connected to at least two of the first transducers for actuating the first transducers.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 25, 2001
    Date of Patent: October 12, 2004
    Assignee: Kabushiki Kaisha Toyota Jidoshokki
    Inventors: Masaki Takasan, Yoshikazu Koike, Sadayuki Ueha
  • Patent number: 6779650
    Abstract: An apparatus for levitating objects has an elongated diaphragm and a transducer. The diaphragm has a first end portion and a second end portion. The first end portion is fixed to a horn and the second end portion is fixed to a supporting member. The transducer is connected to only the horn. The transducer vibrates the diaphragm and an object is levitated above a surface of the diaphragm by radiation pressure of a sound wave generated from the diaphragm. Therefore, the elongated diaphragm can be vibrated by one transducer in a stable condition with a simple structure.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: July 26, 2002
    Date of Patent: August 24, 2004
    Assignee: Kabushiki Kaisha Toyota Jidoshokki
    Inventors: Masaki Takasan, Tatsuya Uematsu, Yoshikazu Koike
  • Patent number: 6766691
    Abstract: Acoustic energy is used to control the shape of a particle or particle cluster for the purpose of inducing a phase and hence density change as a result of exposure to radiation. This process, known as optical acoustic molding, employs an acoustic transducer and reflector positioned around a particle or particle cluster to generate standing waves. These standing waves apply forces to points on the particle's surface. The locus of such points represents a three-dimensional pressure function, which will ultimately cause the particle or particle cluster to acquire a predefined shape. Once the particle or particle cluster has attained the desired shape or density, a radiation source induces rapid melting or solidification (i.e. rapid change in density) of the particles.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: January 8, 2003
    Date of Patent: July 27, 2004
    Assignee: California Institute of Technology
    Inventors: Philip A. Venturelli, Fred E. C. Culick
  • Patent number: 6680994
    Abstract: The contents of a container 1 are non-intrusively monitored by probing the container with an ultrasonic signal, and measuring changes in the ultrasound signature of the received signal after the signal has passed through the contents of the container.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: May 6, 2002
    Date of Patent: January 20, 2004
    Assignee: British Nuclear Fuels PLC
    Inventors: Gordon Rees Jones, Keith Woolley, Joseph William Spencer, Gary Jones, Perminder Tony Singh, Robert McAlpine Dickson, John Raymond Gibson
  • Patent number: 6647791
    Abstract: A mechanism for the contactless gripping and positioning of a component having a planar peripheral edge region, including a sound producing device producing a pattern of levitation sound waves for keeping the component in suspension at a selected position. The sound producing device is configured wherein only the peripheral edge region of the component lies in the sound wave pattern to be acted upon thereby and is fixed in the sound wave pattern by Bernoulli forces. The total surface area of the sound producing device is less than the component's total surface area facing the sound producing device.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: February 22, 2002
    Date of Patent: November 18, 2003
    Assignee: Technische Universitat Munchen
    Inventors: Jürgen Höppner, Josef Zimmerman
  • Publication number: 20030209438
    Abstract: A method and apparatus are disclosed which precisely characterizes the physical properties of particles (20) (21). The apparatus balances the force of gravity (22) (23) against an induced upward force (24) (25) and measures the elevation (27) (28) of suspended particles. The upward force is generated by a structure (26) containing elements and signals that repel the particles.
    Type: Application
    Filed: May 9, 2002
    Publication date: November 13, 2003
    Inventor: Vincent Bressler
  • Patent number: 6644118
    Abstract: A low-power, inexpensive acoustic apparatus for levitation and/or concentration of aerosols and small liquid/solid samples having particulates up to several millimeters in diameter in air or other fluids is described. It is constructed from a commercially available, hollow piezoelectric crystal which has been formed with a cylindrical cross-section to tune the resonance frequency of the breathing mode resonance of the crystal to that of the interior cavity of the cylinder. When the resonance frequency of the interior cylindrical cavity is matched to the breathing mode resonance of the cylindrical piezoelectric transducer, the acoustic efficiency for establishing a standing wave pattern in the cavity is high. By deforming the circular cross-section of the transducer, the acoustic force is concentrated along axial regions parallel to the axis of the transducer. The cylinder does not require accurate alignment of a resonant cavity.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 13, 2002
    Date of Patent: November 11, 2003
    Assignee: The Regents of the University of California
    Inventors: Gregory Kaduchak, Dipen N. Sinha
  • Publication number: 20030154790
    Abstract: Acoustic energy is used to control the shape of a particle or particle cluster for the purpose of inducing a phase and hence density change as a result of exposure to radiation. This process, known as optical acoustic molding, employs an acoustic transducer and reflector positioned around a particle or particle cluster to generate standing waves. These standing waves apply forces to points on the particle's surface. The locus of such points represents a three-dimensional pressure function, which will ultimately cause the particle or particle cluster to acquire a predefined shape. Once the particle or particle cluster has attained the desired shape or density, a radiation source induces rapid melting or solidification (i.e. rapid change in density) of the particles.
    Type: Application
    Filed: January 8, 2003
    Publication date: August 21, 2003
    Inventors: Philip A. Venturelli, Fred E.C. Culick
  • Patent number: 6561309
    Abstract: A gas flow generator for use in a position control apparatus having an oscillating motion driver, a chamber having a side wall extending outwardly from the oscillatory motion generating surface of the driver, a distal end wall spaced from the driver and joined with the side wall, and one or more gas flow orifices provided in the end wall.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: August 22, 2000
    Date of Patent: May 13, 2003
    Assignee: Orbital Technologies Corporation
    Inventors: Eric E. Rice, Robert J. Gustafson
  • Publication number: 20030015035
    Abstract: A low-power, inexpensive acoustic apparatus for levitation and/or concentration of aerosols and small liquid/solid samples having particulates up to several millimeters in diameter in air or other fluids is described. It is constructed from a commercially available, hollow piezoelectric crystal which has been formed with a cylindrical cross-section to tune the resonance frequency of the breathing mode resonance of the crystal to that of the interior cavity of the cylinder. When the resonance frequency of the interior cylindrical cavity is matched to the breathing mode resonance of the cylindrical piezoelectric transducer, the acoustic efficiency for establishing a standing wave pattern in the cavity is high. By deforming the circular cross-section of the transducer, the acoustic force is concentrated along axial regions parallel to the axis of the transducer. The cylinder does not require accurate alignment of a resonant cavity.
    Type: Application
    Filed: September 13, 2002
    Publication date: January 23, 2003
    Inventors: Gregory Kaduchak, Dipen N. Sinha
  • Publication number: 20020162393
    Abstract: A low-power, inexpensive acoustic apparatus for levitation and/or concentration of aerosols and small liquid/solid samples having particulates up to several millimeters in diameter in air or other fluids is described. It is constructed from a commercially available, hollow cylindrical piezoelectric crystal which has been modified to tune the resonance frequency of the breathing mode resonance of the crystal to that of the interior cavity of the cylinder. When the resonance frequency of the interior cylindrical cavity is matched to the breathing mode resonance of the cylindrical piezoelectric transducer, the acoustic efficiency for establishing a standing wave pattern in the cavity is high. The cylinder does not require accurate alignment of a resonant cavity. Water droplets having diameters greater than 1 mm have been levitated against the force of gravity using less than 1 W of input electrical power. Concentration of aerosol particles in air is also demonstrated.
    Type: Application
    Filed: March 15, 2001
    Publication date: November 7, 2002
    Inventors: Gregory Kaduchak, Dipen N. Sinha
  • Patent number: 6467350
    Abstract: A low-power, inexpensive acoustic apparatus for levitation and/or concentration of aerosols and small liquid/solid samples having particulates up to several millimeters in diameter in air or other fluids is described. It is constructed from a commercially available, hollow cylindrical piezoelectric crystal which has been modified to tune the resonance frequency of the breathing mode resonance of the crystal to that of the interior cavity of the cylinder. When the resonance frequency of the interior cylindrical cavity is matched to the breathing mode resonance of the cylindrical piezoelectric transducer, the acoustic efficiency for establishing a standing wave pattern in the cavity is high. The cylinder does not require accurate alignment of a resonant cavity. Water droplets having diameters greater than 1 mm have been levitated against the force of gravity using; less than 1 W of input electrical power. Concentration of aerosol particles in air is also demonstrated.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 15, 2001
    Date of Patent: October 22, 2002
    Assignee: The Regents of the University of California
    Inventors: Gregory Kaduchak, Dipen N. Sinha
  • Publication number: 20020088280
    Abstract: An apparatus levitates and transports an object. The apparatus levitates the object above the surfaces of a plurality of vibrators by air pressure of sound waves that are generated by the vibrators. The apparatus has a plurality of vibration devices, each of which corresponds to one of the vibrators. Each vibration device includes a first transducer for vibrating the corresponding vibrator. Each transducer includes a super-magnetostrictive material. A common power source is connected to at least two of the first transducers for actuating the first transducers.
    Type: Application
    Filed: October 25, 2001
    Publication date: July 11, 2002
    Inventors: Masaki Takasan, Yoshikazu Koike, Sadayuki Ueha
  • Publication number: 20020046606
    Abstract: A method for transferring an object levitated by sound waves from a transporting device to an unloading device. The transporting device includes a transporting vibrator, which levitates the object with sound waves. The unloading device includes an unloading vibrator mounted on a platform. The platform is arranged at a predetermined position below the object, at which the distance between the top surface of the unloading vibrator and the bottom surface of the object is less than one half the wavelength of a standing wave generated by the unloading vibrator. The platform is then moved upward toward the object from the predetermined position to levitate the object. The unloading vibrator generates sound waves to levitate the object. The object is then levitated by the platform to a position at which the levitating force of the transporting vibrator does not affect the object.
    Type: Application
    Filed: October 17, 2001
    Publication date: April 25, 2002
    Inventor: Masaki Takasan
  • Patent number: 6216538
    Abstract: An ultrasonic manipulation apparatus has a plurality of ultrasonic wave oscillators arranged in two dimensions to trap, fix or move particles to an optional position in the solution or perform cell fusion by using a gradient force obtained by superposing one over another the gradient force fields generated by ultrasonic waves produced by a plurality of ultrasonic wave oscillators. The ultrasonic wave oscillators, functioning independently of one another, can emit ultrasonic waves with optional intensities and phases, and by using an external force produced by superposed gradient force fields generated by ultrasonic waves, particles are handled easily.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 4, 1996
    Date of Patent: April 17, 2001
    Assignee: Hitachi, Ltd.
    Inventors: Kenji Yasuda, Shin-ichiro Umemura, Kenichi Kawabata, Kazuo Takeda, Kenko Uchida, Yoshinori Harada, Masao Kamahori, Kazuaki Sasaki