Design and Full-Wave Analysis of Piezoelectric Micro-Needle Antenna Sensors for Enhanced Near-Field Detection of Skin Cancer
The design and full-wave analysis of piezoelectric micro-needle antenna sensors for minimally invasive near-field detection of cancer-related anomalies of the skin is presented. To this end, an accurate locally conformal finite-difference time-domain procedure is adopted. In this way, an insightful understanding of the physical processes affecting the characteristics of the considered class of devices is achieved. This is important to improve the structure reliability, so optimizing the design cycle. In this regard, a suitable sensor layout is described, and discussed in detail. The major benefit of the proposed system stems from the potential for obtaining a superior performance in terms of input impedance matching and efficiency, in combination with an electronically tunable steering property of the near-field radiation intensity which can be profitably used to enhance the illumination and, hence, the localization of possible malignant lesions in the host medium. By using the detailed modeling approach, an extensive parametric study is carried out to analyze the effect produced on the sensor response by variations of the complex permittivity of the skin due to the presence of anomalous cells, and thus useful heuristic discrimination formulas for the evaluation of the exposure level to cancer risk are derived.