Print This Page

College of Engineering » Mechanical Engineering

ME Graduate Seminar: Ronald Miles Ph.D.
WhenThursday, Oct 4, 2018, 3:30 – 4:30 p.m.
Campus locationStudent Union Building (HUB)
Campus room250
Event typesLectures/Seminars
Event sponsorsMechanical Engineering
Target AudienceEngineering students

The Nanophone: Sensing Sound with Nanoscale Spider Silk
Ronald Miles Ph.D.
Chair of the Department of Mechanical Engineering at Binghamton University

Thursday, October 04, 2018
at 3:30PM Husky Union Building
(HUB) 250

ABSTRACT:Hundreds of millions of years of evolution resulted in hair-based flow sensors in terrestrial arthropods that stand out among the most sensitive biological sensors known. These tiny sensory hairs can move with a velocity close to that of the surrounding air at frequencies near their mechanical resonance, in spite of the low viscosity and low density of air. No man- made technology to date demonstrates comparable efficiency. Here we show that nanodimensional spider silk captures fluctuating airflow with maximum physical efficiency (Vsilk/Vair≈1) from 1Hz to 50kHz, providing an unparalleled means for miniaturized flow sensing. Our mathematical model shows excellent agreement with experimental results for silk with various diameters: 500nm, 1.6µm, 3µm. When a fiber is sufficiently thin, it can move with the medium flow perfectly due to the domination of forces applied to it by the medium over those associated with its mechanical properties. By modifying a strand of spider silk to be conductive and transducing its motion using electromagnetic induction, we demonstrate a miniature, directional, broadband, passive, low cost approach to detect airflow with full fidelity over a frequency bandwidth of 1 Hz to 50 kHz. This easily spans the full range of human hearing, as well as other mammals, birds, amphibians, and reptiles.

SPEAKER BIO: Distinguished Professor Ron Miles serves as chair of the Department of Mechanical Engineering. His research involves the diverse fields of mechanics, acoustics, vibrations, MEMS, neurobiology, and control systems to create advanced micro acoustic sensors. These devices have applications in consumer electronics, laboratory instrumentation, automotive, hearing aids and other healthcare applications. He currently serves as Associate Editor for the ASME Journal of Vibration and Acoustics.

Prof. Ron Miles received his BS in Electrical Engineering from the University of California at Berkeley in 1976, and his MS and PhD in mechanical engineering from the University of Washington. He had worked at Boeing for eight years and was also a faculty fellow in the Structural Acoustics Branch at NASA Langley. Dr. Miles has published over one hundred scholarly articles, presented over seventy invited lectures; holds over twenty United States and international patents; has received numerous awards for excellence in teaching and research; and was named Distinguished Professor in May 2011. His research team has included over 80 doctoral, masters and baccalaureate students with research funding over $17M from federal, state, corporate and charitable organizations.…
Printed: Thursday, August 6, 2020 at 9:26 PM PDT