Asier Marzo has worked with the professor at the University of Bristol Bruce Drinkwater on this technology that could be used for surgical operations without incisions
Asier Marzo-Pérez, researcher at the Public University of Navarre (NUP/UPNA), and Bruce Drinkwater, lecturer at the University of Bristol (United Kingdom), have for the first time achieved the acoustic levitation of a whole range of objects independently. This technology could be used to manipulate small particles inside the human body without any type of incision, and also to display information by means of levitating pixels.
This research, which has been funded by the Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council (EPSRC) in the United Kingdom, has just been published in the scientific journal “Proceedings of the National Academy of Science”, the official publication of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States.
Sound can exert force on objects. When ultrasonic waves are used and when the volume is increased considerably, scientists can create an acoustic field capable of moving a whole range of small-sized objects. The new algorithm developed by the team of researchers enables sufficiently complex acoustic fields to capture numerous objects in the desired positions.
ADVANTAGES OF ACOUSTIC TWEEZERS
These acoustic tweezers have capabilities similar to those of the optical tweezers that won the Nobel Prize in Physics this year and which use lasers to capture and transport microparticles. Yet acoustic tweezers offer various advantages over optical tweezers.
Lasers can only travel through transparent mediums, which makes it complicated for them to be used in applications inside biological tissue. By contrast, ultrasound is routinely used in pregnancy ultrasound scanning and in treating kidney stones, as it can penetrate tissue safely and non-invasively.
Another advantage is that acoustic devices are 100,000 times more efficient than optical systems. “Optical tweezers are a fantastic technology, but they always come dangerously close to killing the cells they manipulate. By contrast, the acoustic version enables us to generate forces with the same magnitude but with much less energy. There are many applications that call for cell manipulation, and acoustic systems are perfect for that,” pointed out Prof Drinkwater, lecturer in the Department of Mechanical Engineering at the University of Bristol.
To demonstrate the precision of their system, the scientists stuck two millimetre-sized spheres to the ends of a thread and used the acoustic tweezers to “sew” the thread into a piece of fabric. The system can simultaneously control the 3D movement of up to 25 particles in the air. The team hopes that the technique could be adapted to the manipulation of particles in water within approximately one year. Shortly afterwards, it could be adapted for use in biological tissue.
“The flexibility of the ultrasound waves enables us to operate on micrometric scales to move cells within printed 3D structures or living tissue,” explained Asier Marzo. “But we can also work on a larger scale, for example, to levitate tangible pixels that form various objects in the air.” These objects comprising levitating particles that can be observed by several people from different angles are also susceptible to being touched and manipulated directly; in other words, one can use one’s hands to drag them. “We are used to two-dimensional pixels enclosed in our monitors, but we would like to see a technology in which objects are made up of tangible pixels that float in mid-air,” added the researcher in the Department of Statistics, Computing and Mathematics of the Public University of Navarre.
The Latest on: Acoustic levitation
via Google News
The Latest on: Acoustic levitation
- SNAPSHOT: Scientists Levitate Objects Using Sound on December 19, 2018 at 4:29 pm
Scientists have harnessed the physical force of sound waves before, but for the first time acoustic levitation has been successfully used on multiple objects independently. The breakthrough was achiev... […]
- Watch Sound Waves Levitate Small Objects In Different Directions on December 19, 2018 at 9:47 am
“Acoustic levitation,” the ability to move particles using only sound waves, has been explored by researchers for years, but until now it has only been able to move small objects along one axis at a t... […]
- 72 Tranducers For Acoustic Levitation on November 28, 2018 at 4:42 am
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- Magic! Acoustic Levitation of Liquids! on September 19, 2018 at 5:00 pm
From Argonne Labs comes this intriguing video demonstrating the acoustic levitation of liquids on a piece of equipment developed for NASA to simulate microgravity conditions. Two sets of soundwaves fr... […]
- Using Acoustic Levitation for Applications Going Way Beyond Novelty on August 9, 2018 at 10:11 am
We’ve all seen acoustic levitation, it’s one of the scientific novelties of our age and a regular on the circuit of really impressive physical demonstrations of science to the public. The sight of arr... […]
- LeviZen uses sound waves to levitate water droplets on your desktop on March 4, 2018 at 7:29 pm
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- Could We Levitate Humans With the World’s Most Powerful Acoustic Tractor Beam? on January 22, 2018 at 7:17 am
In a sci-fi feeling first, engineers at the University of Bristol used the world’s most powerful acoustic tractor beam to demonstrate ... to hold particles in mid-air. While magnetic levitation also e... […]
- 3D Print Your Own Levitation Device Courtesy of the University of Bristol on August 21, 2017 at 8:10 am
Acoustic levitation uses strong acoustic waves to push particles from all directions and hold them in mid-air. It’s not as strong as magnetic levitation, which uses magnetic fields to suspend objects, ... […]
- Now you can levitate liquids and insects at home on August 21, 2017 at 4:35 am
Levitation techniques are no longer confined to the laboratory thanks to University of Bristol engineers who have developed an easier way for suspending matter in mid-air by developing a 3D-printed ac... […]
- TinyLev: a 3D printed home acoustic levitator that is capable of holding liquid and insects in mid-air on August 20, 2017 at 6:03 am
The easy-to-build TinyLev acoustic levitator can be assembled by novice users Fraudulent magicians, overzealous spiritualists, and Photoshop experts have given levitation a bad rap. But the process of ... […]
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