Yan LiFollow

Date of Award


Degree Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)



First Advisor

Dr. Gangli Wang

Second Advisor

Dr. Ming Luo

Third Advisor

Dr. Ivaylo Ivanov

Fourth Advisor

Dr. Zhen Huang


With the advancement of current nanotechnology and deeper understanding of mass transport through single solid state nanopores, more applications of nanopores are emerging have been inspired and brought up by biological nanopore. Steady state response has been widely studied and explored. However, dynamic ionic response has seldom been explored. Our group has studied ionic transport kinetics and reported unique time dependent ionic transport behavior through bench-top fabricated single glass nanopores. Compared to other solid state nanopore compartments, single nanopipettes have found applications in scanning ion conductance microscopy, controlled small volume delivery and biological imaging, due to their ease to fabricate and special geometry for precise tip spatial control. Other than generally considered radius and half cone angle, long shank geometry in nanopipettes is another parameter to affect ionic transport behaviors compared to other nanopores with shorter shank length. In this dissertation, the first research topic is dynamic ionic transport behaviors through single quartz nanopipettes from fundamental perspective. An important non-zero cross point separating normal and negative hysteresis current-potential (I-V) loops will be introduced and discussed by electroanalytical analysis. Strong time dependent I-V hysteresis at low frequency and interesting negative resistance behavior reveals the impacts of finite variation in nanogeometry specifically channel length effect. Next, dynamic ion transport through single nanopipettes is studied under a series of concentration gradient introduced. Ion transport dynamics through asymmetric nanogeometry contributed by migration and diffusion is deconvoluted and its implication in salinity gradient energy conversion is explained. In the third project, a new method to crystallize matter based on dynamic control of mass transport through single nanopipette is demonstrated using protein insulin.