A Performance-Enhanced Liquid Metal-Based Microheater with Parallel Ventilating Side-Channels.
ABSTRACT: Gallium-based liquid metal can be used as a material for microheaters because it can be easily filled into microchannels and electrified to generate Joule heat, but the liquid metal-based microheater will suffer breakage induced by voids forming within the liquid metal when the temperature normally gets higher than 100 °C. To resolve this problem, a novel liquid metal-based microheater with parallel ventilating side-channels is presented. It consists of a liquid-metal heating channel and two parallel ventilating side-channels. The heating channel is connected with the side-channels by small gaps between polydimethylsiloxane (PDMS) posts. Experimental results show that this novel microheater can be heated up to 200 °C without damage. To explain its excellent performance, an experiment is performed to discover the development of the voids within the liquid-metal heating channel, and two reasons are put forward in this work on the basis of the experiment. Afterward pressing and bending tests are conducted to explore the mechanical stability of the novel microheaters. Finally, the microheaters are applied to warm water to show their good flexibility on non-flat surfaces. In consequence, the novel liquid metal-based microheater is believed to be widely applicable to soft micro-electro-mechanical system(MEMS) heating devices.
Project description:Slow light has been widely utilized to obtain enhanced nonlinearities, enhanced spontaneous emissions and increased phase shifts owing to its ability to promote light-matter interactions. By incorporating a graphene on a slow-light silicon photonic crystal waveguide, here we experimentally demonstrate an energy-efficient graphene microheater with a tuning efficiency of 1.07?nmmW<sup>-1</sup> and power consumption per free spectral range of 3.99?mW. The rise and decay times (10-90%) are only 750 and 525?ns, which, to the best of our knowledge, are the fastest reported response times for microheaters in silicon photonics. The corresponding figure of merit of the device is 2.543?nW?s, one order of magnitude better than results reported in previous studies. The influence of the length and shape of the graphene heater to the tuning efficiency is further investigated, providing valuable guidelines for enhancing the tuning efficiency of the graphene microheater.
Project description:Microneedle patch devices have been widely utilized for transdermal drug delivery in pain management, but is challenged by accurate control of drug release and subsequent diffusion to human body. The recent emerging wearable electronics that could be integrated with microneedle devices offer a facile approach to address such a challenge. Here a 3D-printed microheater integrated drug-encapsulated microneedle patch system for drug delivery is presented. The ink solution comprised polydimethylsiloxane (PDMS) and multiwalled carbon nanotubes (MWCNTs) with a mass concentration of up to 45% (?10 times higher of existing ones) is prepared and used to print crack-free stretchable microheaters on substrates with a broad range of materials and geometric curves. The adhesion strength of the printed microheater on the microneedle patch in elevated temperatures is measured to evaluate their integration performance. Assessments of encapsulated drug release into rat's skin are confirmed by examining degradation of microneedles, skin morphologies, and released fluorescent signals. Results and demonstrations established here creates a new opportunity for developing sensor controlled smart microneedle patch systems by integrating with wearable electronics, potentially useful in clinical and biomedical research.
Project description:A flow redirection and single cell immobilization method in a microfluidic chip is presented. Microheaters generated localized heating and induced poly(N-isopropylacrylamide) phase transition, creating a hydrogel that blocked a channel or immobilized a single cell. The heaters were activated in sets to redirect flow and exchange the fluid in which an immobilized cell was immersed. A yeast cell was immobilized in hydrogel and a 4',6-diamidino-2-phenylindole (DAPI) fluorescent stain was introduced using flow redirection. DAPI diffused through the hydrogel and fluorescently labelled the yeast DNA, demonstrating in situ single cell biochemistry by means of immobilization and fluid exchange.
Project description:A liquid-metal based spiral magnetohydrodynamic (MHD) micropump is proposed in this work. The micropump was fabricated in a polydimethylsiloxane (PDMS)-glass hybrid microfluidic chip. This pump utilized two parallel liquid-metal-filled channels as electrodes to generate a parallel electrical field across the pumping channel between the two electrodes. To prevent contact and cross contamination between the liquid metal in the electrode channel and the sample fluid in the pumping channel, a PDMS gap was designed between the liquid metal and the sample fluid. To minimize the chip size, the parallel electrode and pumping channels were designed in a spiral shape. To test pumping performance, NaCl aqueous solution containing fluorescent particles (0.5 ?m in diameter) was filled into the pumping channel as the working sample fluid. When a pair of identical magnets (0.4 T) was placed onto both top and bottom surfaces of the chip, the pump was able to drive the sample fluid at a flow velocity of 233.26 ?m/s at 3000 V. The pump has no moving parts, and the electrodes are easily fabricated, making the pump suitable for miniaturization and integration into microfluidic systems.
Project description:A facile top-down/bottom-up hybrid nanofabrication process based on programmable temperature control and parallel chemical supply within microfluidic platform has been developed for the all liquid-phase synthesis of heterogeneous nanomaterial arrays. The synthesized materials and locations can be controlled by local heating with integrated microheaters and guided liquid chemical flow within microfluidic platform. As proofs-of-concept, we have demonstrated the synthesis of two types of nanomaterial arrays: (i) parallel array of TiO2 nanotubes, CuO nanospikes and ZnO nanowires, and (ii) parallel array of ZnO nanowire/CuO nanospike hybrid nanostructures, CuO nanospikes and ZnO nanowires. The laminar flow with negligible ionic diffusion between different precursor solutions as well as localized heating was verified by numerical calculation and experimental result of nanomaterial array synthesis. The devices made of heterogeneous nanomaterial array were utilized as a multiplexed sensor for toxic gases such as NO2 and CO. This method would be very useful for the facile fabrication of functional nanodevices based on highly integrated arrays of heterogeneous nanomaterials.
Project description:A liquid metal based microfluidic system was proposed and demonstrated for the generation and sorting of liquid metal droplets. This micro system utilized silicon oil as the continuous phase and Ga66In20.5Sn13.5 (66.0 wt % Ga, 20.5 wt % In, 13.5 wt % Sn, melting point: 10.6 °C) as the dispersed phase to generate liquid metal droplets on a three-channel F-junction generator. The F-junction is an updated design similar to the classical T-junction, which has a special branch channel added to a T-junction for the supplement of 30 wt % aqueous NaOH solution. To perform active sorting of liquid metal droplets by dielectrophoresis (DEP), the micro system utilized liquid-metal-filled microchannels as noncontact electrodes to induce electrical fields through the droplet channel. The electrode channels were symmetrically located on both sides of the droplet channel in the same horizontal level. According to the results, the micro system can generate uniformly spherical liquid metal droplets, and control the flow direction of the liquid metal droplets. To better understand the control mechanism, a numerical simulation of the electrical field was performed in detail in this work.
Project description:Ferritins, complex protein nanocages, form internal iron-oxy minerals (Fe2O3·H2O), by moving cytoplasmic Fe(2+) through intracage ion channels to cage-embedded enzyme (2Fe(2+)/O2 oxidoreductase) sites where ferritin biomineralization is initiated. The products of ferritin enzyme activity are diferric oxy complexes that are mineral precursors. Conserved, carboxylate amino acid side chains of D127 from each of three cage subunits project into ferritin ion channels near the interior ion channel exits and, thus, could direct Fe(2+) movement to the internal enzyme sites. Ferritin D127E was designed and analyzed to probe properties of ion channel size and carboxylate crowding near the internal ion channel opening. Glu side chains are chemically equivalent to, but longer by one -CH2 than Asp, side chains. Ferritin D127E assembled into normal protein cages, but diferric peroxo formation (enzyme activity) was not observed, when measured at 650 nm (DFP ? max). The caged biomineral formation, measured at 350 nm in the middle of the broad, nonspecific Fe(3+)-O absorption band, was slower. Structural differences (protein X-ray crystallography), between ion channels in wild type and ferritin D127E, which correlate with the inhibition of ferritin D127E enzyme activity include: (1) narrower interior ion channel openings/pores; (2) increased numbers of ion channel protein-metal binding sites, and (3) a change in ion channel electrostatics due to carboxylate crowding. The contributions of ion channel size and structure to ferritin activity reflect metal ion transport in ion channels are precisely regulated both in ferritin protein nanocages and membranes of living cells.
Project description:The chemiresistive thin film gas sensors with fast response, high sensitivity, low power consumption and mass-produced potency, have been expected for practical application. It requires both sensitive materials, especially exquisite nanomaterials, and efficient substrate chip for heating and electrical addressing. However, it is challenging to achieve repeatable microstructures across the films and low power consumption of substrate chip. Here we presented a new sensor structure via the fusion of metal-oxide nanoporous films and micro-electro-mechanical systems (MEMS)-based sensing chip. An interdigital-electrodes (IDEs) and microheater integrated MEMS structure is designed and employed as substrate chip to in-situ fabricate colloidal monolayer template-induced metal-oxide (egg. SnO2) nanoporous sensing films. This fused sensor demonstrates mW-level low power, ultrafast response (~1?s), and parts-per-billion lever detection for ethanol gas. Due to the controllable template strategy and mass-production potential, such micro/nano fused high-performance gas sensors will be next-generation key miniaturized/integrated devices for advanced practical applications.
Project description:We report an observation of rapid (exceeding 2,000 K/s) heating of polydimethylsiloxane (PDMS), one of the most popular microchannel materials, under cyclic loadings at high (~MHz) frequencies. A microheater was developed based on the finding. The heating mechanism utilized vibration damping in PDMS induced by sound waves that were generated and precisely controlled using a conventional surface acoustic wave (SAW) microfluidic system. The refraction of SAW into the PDMS microchip, called the leaky SAW, takes a form of bulk wave and rapidly heats the microchannels in a volumetric manner. The penetration depths were measured to range from 210 ?m to 1290 ?m, enough to cover most sizes of microchannels. The energy conversion efficiency was SAW frequency-dependent and measured to be the highest at around 30 MHz. Independent actuation of each interdigital transducer (IDT) enabled independent manipulation of SAWs, permitting spatiotemporal control of temperature on the microchip. All the advantages of this microheater facilitated a two-step continuous flow polymerase chain reaction (CFPCR) to achieve the billion-fold amplification of a 134 bp DNA amplicon in less than 3 min.
Project description:A metal-organic framework (MOF) with one-dimensional channels of approximately hexagonal cross-section [Ag2(O2CCF2CF2CO2)(TMP)] 1: (TMP?=2,3,5,6-tetramethylpyrazine) has been synthesized with MeOH filling the channels in its as-synthesized form as [Ag2(O2CCF2CF2CO2)(TMP)]·n(MeOH) 1-MEOH: (n?=?1.625 by X-ray crystallography). The two types of ligand connect columns of Ag(I) centres in an alternating manner, both around the channels and along their length, leading to an alternating arrangement of hydrocarbon (C-H) and fluorocarbon (C-F) groups lining the channel walls, with the former groups projecting further into the channel than the latter. MeOH solvent in the channels can be exchanged for a variety of arene guests, ranging from xylenes to tetrafluorobenzene, as confirmed by gas chromatography, 1H nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR) spectroscopy, thermogravimetric analysis and 13C cross-polarization magic angle spinning NMR spectroscopy. Alkane and perfluoroalkane guests, however, do not enter the channels. Although exhibiting some stability under a nitrogen atmosphere, sufficient to enable crystal structure determination, the evacuated MOF 1: is unstable for periods of more than minutes under ambient conditions or upon heating, whereupon it undergoes an irreversible solid-state transformation to a non-porous polymorph 2: , which comprises Ag2(O2CCF2CF2CO2) coordination layers that are pillared by TMP ligands. This transformation has been followed in situ by powder X-ray diffraction and shown to proceed via a crystalline intermediate.This article is part of the themed issue 'Coordination polymers and metal-organic frameworks: materials by design'.