Journal: Review of Scientific Instruments 2019, 90, 115108.

Authors: Frederick Meyer, Arne Langhoff, Antonio Arnau, Diethelm Johannsmann, and Ilya Reviakine

Abstract: Quartz crystal microbalance with dissipation monitoring (QCMD) is a simple and versatile sensing technique with applications in a wide variety of academic and industrial fields, most notably electrochemistry, biophysics, quality control, and environmental monitoring. QCMD is limited by a relatively poor time resolution, which is of the order of seconds with conventional instrument designs at the noise level usually required. In this work, we present a design of an ultrafast QCMD with submillisecond time resolution. It is based on a frequency comb approach applied to a high-fundamental-frequency (HFF) resonator through a multifrequency lock-in amplifier. The combination allows us to reach data acquisition rates >10 kHz. We illustrate the method using a toy model of a glass sphere dropped on the resonator surfaces, bare or coated with liposomes, in liquid. We discuss some interesting features of the results obtained with the dropped spheres, such as bending of the HFF resonators due to the impact, sphere bouncing (or the absence of it), and contact aging.