Micro-Chemo-Mechanical Systems

MSE Faculty, Seminar Room, Room 609, 6th floor, Dalia Maydan Bldg.
Prof. Alexander A. Solovev

Prof. Alexander A. Solovev

Materials Science Department, Fudan University, Shanghai, P. R. China

Recently discovered Micro-Chemo-Mechanical-Systems represent a new class of tetherless nano/-microdevices, which do not require any wires or physical joints with the substrate. Nano-/micromotors convert local chemical energy and/or energy of external field (e.g. light, ultrasound, temperature, magnetic field, electric field) into autonomous movements and pumping of fluids. Micromotors can effectively overcome Brownian diffusion, high viscosity of fluids at very low Reynolds numbers and accomplish series of tasks on their way. Moreover, a miniaturization of machines leads to unique sizetunable properties including a negligible inertia/weight, high surface to volume ratio, high strength to weight ratio, high energy conversion efficiency, faster relative motion and ultra-precise movements on the atomic scale.[1] By using catalytic tubes as microreactors we reduced the threshold of hydrogen peroxide concentration for generation of O2 microbubble by a factor of ×1000, which enabled pumping of fluids/fuels and ultrafast motion of micromotors. My group demonstrated the smallest and the fastest autonomous nano/-micromotor[2] known to date (Guinness World Record for “the smallest man-made jet engine”), driven by the most compact valveless catalytic micropump,[3] fabricated using our invented strain-engineered inorganic/catalytic nanomembrane method.[4] I will discuss concepts, achievements, challenges and perspectives facing man-made micromachines.


  1. H. Ning, Y. Zhang, H. Zhu, A. Ingham, G. S. Huang, Y. F. Mei, A. A. Solovev. Micromachines 9 (2), 75 (2018)
  2. A. A. Solovev, Y. F. Mei, E. B. Ureña, G. S. Huang, O. G. Schmidt. Small 5, 1688 (2009)
  3. A. A Solovev, S. Sanchez, Y. F. Mei, O. G. Schmidt, Phys. Chem. Chem. Phys., 13, 10131, (2011).
  4. Y. F. Mei, G. S. Huang, A. A Solovev, E. B. Ureña, I. Mönch, F. Ding, T. Reindl, R. K.Y. Fu, P. K. Chu,O. G. Schmidt. Adv. Mater. 20, 4085 (2008)