7 December 2013 Additive manufacturing of lab-on-a-chip devices: promises and challenges
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Abstract
This work describes a preliminary investigation of commercially available 3D printing technologies for rapid prototyping and low volume fabrication of Lab-on-a-Chip devices. The main motivation of the work was to use off-the-shelf 3D printing methods in order to rapidly and inexpensively build microfluidic devices with complex geometric features and reduce the need to use clear room environment and conventional microfabrication techniques. Both multi-jet modelling (MJM) and stereolithography (SLA) processes were explored. MJM printed devices were fabricated using a HD3500+ (3D Systems) high-definition printer using a thermo-polymer VisiJet Crystal (3D Systems) substratum that allows for a z-axis resolution of 16 μm and 25 μm x-y accuracy. SLA printed devices were produced using a Viper Pro (3D Systems) stereolithography system using Watershed 11122XC (DSM Somos) and Dreve Fototec 7150 Clear (Dreve Otoplastik GmbH) resins which allow for a z-axis resolution of 50 μm and 25 μm x-y accuracy. Fabrication results compared favourably with other forms of rapid prototyping such as laser cut PMMA devices and PDMS moulded microfluidic devices of the same design. Both processes allowed for fabrication of monolithic, optically transparent devices with features in the 100 μm range requiring minimal post-processing. Optical polymer qualities following different post-processing methods were also tested in both brightfield and fluorescence imaging of transgenic zebrafish embryos. Finally, we show that only ethanol-treated Dreve Fototec 7150 Clear resign proved to be non-toxic to human cell lines and fish embryos in fish toxicity assays (FET) requiring further investigation of 3D printing materials.
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Feng Zhu, Niall P. Macdonald, Jonathan M. Cooper, Donald Wlodkowic, "Additive manufacturing of lab-on-a-chip devices: promises and challenges", Proc. SPIE 8923, Micro/Nano Materials, Devices, and Systems, 892344 (7 December 2013); doi: 10.1117/12.2033400; https://doi.org/10.1117/12.2033400
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