Research Article


2021, 14(9): 3208–3213


Optoelectronic sensing of biophysical and biochemical signals based on photon recycling of a micro-LED

He Ding1, Guoqing Lv1, Zhao Shi2, Dali Cheng2, Yang Xie2, Yunxiang Huang3, Lan Yin3, Jian Yang1, Yongtian Wang1, and Xing Sheng2 (✉)

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1 Beijing Engineering Research Center of Mixed Reality and Advanced Display, School of Optics and Photonics, Beijing Institute of Technology, Beijing 100081, China
2 Department of Electronic Engineering, Beijing National Research Center for Information Science and Technology, Center for Flexible Electronics Technology, Tsinghua University, Beijing 100084, China
3 School of Materials Science and Engineering, Tsinghua University, Beijing 100084, China

Keywords: photon recycling, photoluminescence, microscale light-emitting diodes (micro-LEDs), optoelectronics, biosensors
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  • Abstract
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Conventional bioelectrical sensors and systems integrate multiple power harvesting, signal amplification and data transmission components for wireless biological signal detection. This paper reports the real-time biophysical and biochemical activities can be optically captured using a microscale light-emitting diode (micro-LED), eliminating the need for complicated sensing circuit. Such a thin-film diode based device simultaneously absorbs and emits photons, enabling wireless power harvesting and signal transmission. Additionally, owing to its strong photon-recycling effects, the micro-LED’s photoluminescence (PL) emission exhibits a superlinear dependence on the external conductance. Taking advantage of these unique mechanisms, instantaneous biophysical signals including galvanic skin response, pressure and temperature, and biochemical signals like ascorbic acid concentration, can be optically monitored, and it demonstrates that such an optoelectronic sensing technique outperforms a traditional tethered, electrically based sensing circuit, in terms of its footprint, accuracy and sensitivity. This presented optoelectronic sensing approach could establish promising routes to advanced biological sensors.
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Optoelectronic sensing of biophysical and biochemical signals based on photon recycling of a micro-LED. Nano Res. 2021, 14(9): 3208–3213

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