- Jackson, W. C. and Tran, H. D. and O'Brien, M. J. and Rabinovich, E. and Lopez, G. P., Rapid prototyping of active microfluidic components based on magnetically modified elastomeric materials,
JOURNAL OF VACUUM SCIENCE & TECHNOLOGY B, vol. 19 no. 2
pp. 596--599 .
(last updated on 2010/02/08)
Replica molding of elastomeric materials has proven to be an extremely useful new technology for the formation of complex microfluidic systems. Recent demonstrations of convenient methods for production of such systems by simple, rapid methods that do not require expensive fabrication facilities have enabled the extensive use of microsystems in research and development into a host of new application fields. This report describes a simple new method for fabricating active elastomeric components in microfluidic systems that is based on deformation of elastic materials that have been impregnated or coated with magnetic materials. Computer controlled miniature electromagnets are used to activate switching valves within microfluidics systems. Similar fabrication techniques can be easily extended to construct complex, and potentially completely integrated, microfluidic systems containing active valves, pumps, injectors, mixers, and flow controllers. Preliminary results indicate fabrication of channels approximately 200 mum in width, with valves approximately 5 mm in size (including both valve chamber and valve actuator). The fabrication cycle time is on the order of one day using readily available benchtop equipment, and the valves seal hermetically against a 1.5 kPa back pressure. (C) 2001 American Vacuum Society.