A smartphone biosensor based on analysing structural colour of porous silicon†
We report a smartphone compatible, low-cost porous silicon biosensor, which correlates the structural colour of a porous silicon microcavity (PSiM) to spectral peak position. Molecules captured in the PSiM cause a colour change that can be quantified through image analysis. Minimal external accessories are employed. Spectrometer measurements of the PSiM reflectance spectrum shifts are carried out concurrently with the smartphone measurements to benchmark the accuracy of the smartphone biosensor. We estimate that the smartphone biosensor supports an equivalent accuracy of 0.33 nm for the detection of colour changes corresponding to spectral shifts of the PSiM. Biosensing functionality is demonstrated using a biotin–streptavidin assay with an estimated detection limit of 500 nM. The PSiM-smartphone biosensor is a promising platform for label-free point of care diagnostics.