CREATING COMPLEX FLOWS USING ULTRASONICS FOR NEW BIOMEDICAL DEVICES AND DIAGNOSTIC TECHNOLOGIES
University of Glasgow, UK
Microfluidics and Lab-Chip technologies are synonymous with the movement of fluids on or around microstructured surfaces, including channels. Flow is often driven by peristaltic pumps or through electrokinetic flows (including electro-osmosis, for example). Recently, pressure driven flow through the use of surface acoustic waves (SAWs) has attracted much attention. To better control the nature of the acoustic field when using SAWs, we have introduced the concept of using frequency dependent periodic arrays known as phononic crystals within microfludics. In doing so, we have enabled new “acoustic holograms” that result in waveguiding, reflectors, bandgaps and lenses, that shape the ultrasonic field and create new microfludic flows. We are able to demonstrate how we can create interesting liquid manipulations, including on-chip centrigugation, cell lysis through shear, cell separation, liquid heating and atomization. The applications of this technology are demonstrated through four “real-world” examples, namely (i) sample preparation and identification of malarial parasites in whole blood; (ii) the measurement of visco-elastic properties of blood; (iv) new techniques for NGS and (iv) the control of the size distribution of droplets during nebulization (a requirement in pulmonary drug delivery, for example).