Free-Surface Microfluidics: Exploring New Actuation and Sensing Methods

G. Yu, N. Lei, X. Chen, W. Xue, J. Xu
Washington State University, US

Keywords: free-surface microfluidics, sensing, actuation

Summary:

Unlike traditional microchannel-based microfluidics, free-surface microfluidics features no channel, ease to clean, simple design fabrication and operation, as well as external access to the samples. It has been proven that free-surface droplets can be actuated and manipulated by Electrowetting-on-dielectric (EWOD) technology. However, little has been done to study the actuating and sensing mechanisms inside free-surface droplets, which are important components for future development of free-surface microfluidic systems. For example, the ability to precisely trap, transport and manipulate micrometer-sized objects would be desirable in many biomedical applications. In this poster, we will present recent advancements in our group on the development of acoustic actuation and electrochemical sensing technologies inside free-surface droplets. The acoustic actuation in free-surface droplets is achieved by acoustic radiation forces. The electrochemical sensing inside a free-surface droplet is achieved by a novel graphene sensor.