Access Type

Open Access Dissertation

Date of Award

January 2020

Degree Type


Degree Name



Electrical and Computer Engineering

First Advisor

Yang Zhao


Electrode probes are devices widely used for stimulating and recording neural cell signals in the neuroscience field, which can convert the ion potential generated by electrochemical activities into an electronic potential that can be measured by the external instrument systems. A stable neural interface that effectively communicates with the nervous system via electrode is much important for the robust recording and the long-term monitoring of the activity of the neural signals. These probes are designed to minimize tissue damage for superior signal quality. Each probe’s mechanical, geometric, and electrical characteristics are precise and highly reproducible for consistent, high-quality results. There are several material candidates, including platinum, iridium, iridium oxide, carbon derivatives (graphene and carbon nanotubes), conductive polymers, and titanium nitride. Titanium nitride as the neural implant electrode can have broad applications owing to its super electrical conductivity, biocompatibility, chemical stability, and good hardness. In this work, a highly ordered TiN nanotube electrode is fabricated and studied by the two-step anodization technique. The corrosion characterization was studied in the phosphate-buffered saline (PBS). The result shows that the TiN nanotubes electrodes have a promising application in the neural probe stimulation. In addition, the TiN nanotube electrodes are further studied as a biosensor for the neurotransmitter detection of dopamine and serotonin. The result provides a good guideline for the in-vivo experiment of dopamine and serotonin detection.

The application of Ti in wireless LC sensors is also studied owing to its biocompatible and good conductivity. We present a novel and implantable LC tank sensor simulation estimation for continuous ICP monitoring. The implantable sensor comprises a helix coil with a series-connected spiral coil connected in series to a cylindrical capacitor, all of them made by

Titanium metal.