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Simple, Fast, and Low Cost Fabrication Methods of Microchannels for Manipulation of Living Cells

[+] Author Affiliations
Anas Alazzam, Bashar El-Khasawneh, Mohammad Abutayeh

Khalifa University, Abu Dhabi, UAE

Paper No. IMECE2013-66152, pp. V010T11A046; 8 pages
  • ASME 2013 International Mechanical Engineering Congress and Exposition
  • Volume 10: Micro- and Nano-Systems Engineering and Packaging
  • San Diego, California, USA, November 15–21, 2013
  • Conference Sponsors: ASME
  • ISBN: 978-0-7918-5639-0
  • Copyright © 2013 by ASME


This work details simple non-cleanroom fabrication techniques to build hermetic microchannels using laboratory available material and equipment. Four different methods are presented for fast fabrication of microchannels at low cost. The microchannels are to be used for the manipulation of living cells. These methods of fabrication of microfluidics devices have previously been used and documented as reactors, fluid mixer, and for fluids transportation and inspection. In this work, all methods were used for manipulation of living cells. Each method, its advantages and disadvantages for this particular application are reported. The microfluidic device built using the first method includes a polymer-based part and a glass substrate with a layer of patterned electrodes. The Polymer-based microchannel is made outside the cleanroom facility using a simple mold made from adhesive tape. Moreover, the fabrication of a non-polymer microchannel made from double-sided tape is described. The microchannel height is about 50 μm while the width varies between 100 μm to a few hundred microns. The third method of fabrication is made by a 3D printer. The master molds for the polymer-based microfluidic device are fabricated by 3D printing of biocompatible material on glass substrate. The fourth method is a simple embossing of a male die in plastic or polymer substrate. A computer numerical control (CNC) machine was used to fabricate the embossing mold in stainless steel, brass, and aluminum. Microchannels were created by stamping the mold in a Cyclic Olefin Copolymer (COC) substrate.

Copyright © 2013 by ASME



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