Microtech2010 2010

Microfluidic System Integration (invited)

D. Sparks
Integrated Sensing Systems, US

Keywords: MEMS devices and applications


The various aspects of system integration for microfluidic devices will be discussed. The MicroElectroMechanical Systems (MEMS) devices covered requires both fluidic and electrical interfaces as well as wafer-level vacuum packaging of the sensing element. The need for a liquid or gas interface is unique to microfluidics versus most MEMS devices and applications. The fluidic interface can be static or dynamic and in some dynamic cases interact with very high flow rates at high pressures. Pressure drops, turbulence, corrosion, biocompatibility, clogging and burst pressure are other related parameters that must be addressed in microfluidics. By using either a chip or system-level by-pass package design the limitations of low flow rate and high pressure drop often encountered with microfluidic products can be avoided. One of the MEMS devices discussed utilizes a resonating silicon microtube that is electrostatically driven and capacitively sensed. To improve the Q of the resonator a chip-scale, thin-film NanoGetterĀ® was been integrated into the MEMS wafer process to lower the microcavity pressure. Electrical connection to the microsensor can present a challenge; both wired and wireless systems will be covered. For medical and fuel applications a variety of regulations that affect the package and circuit design, must be considered for the complete system prior to sales. These design impacting restrictions include those for patient implantation or drug infusion (Class III or II medical device) as well as requirements for intrinsically safe design if flammable liquids or gases are being monitored. Examples for an intrinsically safe fuel quality sensor and wireless implantable pressure sensor will be examined.
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