Microfluidics

The fabrication and effective operation of very large-scale integrated (VLSI) microfluidic arrays and networks is an essential requirement for the effective advancement of several Center multi-nozzle process technologies, i.e., e-jet and direct ink write.  The Center is addressing the scaling down and increasing the complexity of micro/nano fluidic networks to enable the delivery of precisely "scheduled" and metered fluid packets or plugs to a specific addressable location within a micro/nano scale fluidic network.

The following are examples of the microfluidic network fabrication and design expertise being
developed in the Center:

  1. Multiplexed Peristaltic Pumps for High-Density Networks
    The Center has developed a novel approach for fabricating 2-layer multiplexed pneumatic
    valved microfluidic networks that allow for a large number of peristaltic pumps to be controlled
    with a limited number of external pneumatic connections.

  2. Multiplexed Electrical Sensor Array Microfluidic Networks
    The Center has developed multiplexed sensing architecture capable of monitoring the
    movement of discrete fluid droplets in a microfluidic network containing m x n electronic
    sensors with only m + n + 1 electrical contacts compared with 2 x m x n contacts traditionally
    used.

  3. Fabrication of microfluidic chips with integrated mixing and sensing capabilities
    The Center has developed an innovative microfluidic platform design with combinatorial mixing and an on-chip photonic crystal sensing capability of detecting biomolecular binding events.

  4. Multiplexed Detection of Nucleic Acids on Combinatorial Screening Chip
    The Center has extended the integrated mixing and sensing microfluidic chip development for the screening of nucleic acids with sensing being provided by molecular beacons and total internal reflection fluorescence microscopy (TRIF).

For more information about this research, download the full description.