This paper reports the successful design, fabrication and testing of thin membrane transducers that can monitor biochemical reactions through chemical-mechanical transduction. Two different membrane materials were chosen: Silicon Nitride (Si3N4) and polydimethylsiloxane (PDMS). In both configurations, a specific molecular binding event on the surface of the diaphragm causes a deflection detected by the capacitance change across a gap between the membrane and a substrate. Preliminary tests presented in this paper demonstrate in-situ monitoring of the formation of a self assembled monolayer (SAM) and biotin-streptavidin binding. The reported mechanism is the first demonstration of a capacitive chemical sensor using a membrane element.

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