Date of Award


Degree Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy



Major Professor

Michael J. Sepaniak

Committee Members

Tessa R. Calhoun, Edmund Perfect, Ziling (Ben) Xue


The ability to separate chemicals is vitally useful to a wide variety of fields including chemistry, biology, pharmacology, and environmental analysis. Thin-layer chromatography is advantageous in the world of chemical separations as it is easy to use, can accommodate multiple samples at once, and has a wide range of applicability. However, this technique can be limited by band broadening, thus decreasing its efficiency. In an effort to increase efficiency particle sizes have been reduced, which in turn has decreased the mobile phase velocity. The used of micro- and nanopillar arrays systems mitigates this decrease due to the more ordered arrangement of the pillars, but efficiency is still limited by the mobile phase velocity. The work presented herein focuses on the fabrication and development of separation platforms that improve efficiency of pillar array chromatography systems by increasing mobile phase flow velocity through the use of centrifugal force.Likewise, the ability to separate particles on the micro- and nanoscale is important for many applications such as food processing, medical diagnostics, and cosmetics. There are a variety of techniques to create devices capable of sorting and separating micro- and nanoparticles. However, these devices are aimed at separating low volume high value samples. The second project described in the work herein proposed the use of micro 3D laser printing to create mesh filters in channels for the separation of nanoparticles suspended in solutions of low volume, as well as a system allowing the study of diffusion of particles through the mesh filters.

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