Design Principles For 3D-Printed Microfluidics

Wednesday, 29 November 2023 at 15:00

Add to Calendar ▼2023-11-29 15:00:002023-11-29 16:00:00Europe/LondonDesign Principles For 3D-Printed MicrofluidicsLab-on-a-Chip and Microfluidics World Congress 2023 in Laguna Hills, CaliforniaLaguna Hills,

As 3D printing replaces traditional clean room manufacturing for microfluidic engineering applications, it’s becoming clear that this transition offers not only lower cost and faster design iterations, but also new opportunities for fluidic routing and control that are only possible due to the inherent three-dimensional nature of these systems. Over the past several years, we have developed design principles that take advantage of this three-dimensionality, as well as demonstrating several applications that benefit from this approach.

Designing fluidic paths in three dimensions can be facilitated using standard finite element modeling tools for fluid simulations. For instance, we used a FEM fluid mechanics simulation to design and optimize a 3D flow-focusing junction for manufacturing lipid vaccine nanoparticles. In addition, modular 3D printed devices allow for the application of rules from circuit design. And the nature of 3D printing as an easily characterized manufacturing technique facilitates the statistical analysis of tolerances to predict operational ranges of microfluidic systems.

3D printing also presents materials opportunities and challenges for microfluidic applications. For instance, stereolithographic resins can often poison enzymatic reactions, limiting applications to biochemical processing. We have explored surface modification techniques to passivate 3D-printed channel surfaces and enable on-chip enzymatic reactions.

Noah Malmstadt, Professor, Mork Family Dept. of Chemical Engineering & Materials Science, University of Southern California

Noah Malmstadt

Noah Malmstadt is Professor at the University of Southern California. He received a BS in Chemical Engineering from Caltech and a PhD in Bioengineering from the University of Washington. Following postdoctoral work at UCLA, he joined the Mork Family Department of Chemical Engineering and Materials Science at USC in 2007. Malmstadt is the recipient of a 2012 Office of Naval Research Young Investigator award. His research focuses on microfluidic strategies to facilitate material fabrication and biophysical analysis. He has pioneered the integration of ionic liquids as solvents in droplet microreactors and the application of microfluidic systems to synthesizing biomimetic cell membranes. Microfluidic analytical techniques he has developed include methods for measuring the permeability of cell membranes to druglike molecules and techniques for measuring ionic currents through membrane proteins.