Analysis of Cargo Loading Modes and Capacity of an Electrically-Powered Active Carrier

Xiaoye Huo, Yue Wu, Alicia Boymelgreen, Gilad Yossifon

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


The use of active colloids for cargo transport offers unique potential for applications ranging from targeted drug delivery to lab-on-a-chip systems. Previously, Janus particles (JPs), acting as mobile microelectrodes, have been shown to transport cargo which is trapped at the JP surface by a dielectrophoretic mechanism. Herein, we aim to characterize the cargo loading properties of mobile Janus carriers, across a broad range of frequencies and voltages. In expanding the frequency range of the carrier, we are able to compare the influences of different modes of carrier transport on the loading capacity as well as highlight the differences between cargo trapped by positive and negative dielectrophoresis. Specifically, it is shown that cargo trapping results in a reduction in carrier velocities with this effect more pronounced at low frequencies where cargo is trapped close to the substrate. Interestingly, we observe the existence of a maximum cargo loading capacity which decreases at large voltages suggesting a strong interplay between trapping and hydrodynamic shear. Finally, we demonstrate that the control of the frequency can enable different assemblies of binary colloidal solutions on the JP. The resultant findings enable the optimization of electrokinetic cargo transport and its selective application to a broad range of targets.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)6963-6970
Number of pages8
Issue number25
StatePublished - 30 Jun 2020
Externally publishedYes


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