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MIT - Massachusetts Institute of Technology

Miniaturized, Internally Fed, Polymer Electrospray Emitters.


Credits: Luis F. Velasquez-Garcia, MIT.

"I think the future of microfluidics is in 3D printing; the current way microfluidics are made is very restrictive in the kinds of geometries required and they do not scale well."  Luis F. Velasquez-Garcia, MIT.

The 3D printed devices include features not easily attainable with other micro-fabrication methods, e.g., tapered channels and threaded holes. Through
the optimization of the fabrication process 10-mm tall, isolated, straight, solid columns with diameter as small as 300μm, and 12-mm long, straight  tubes  with inner diameter as small as 400μm and wall thickness as small as 150μm were demonstrated. Arrays with as many as 236 internally fed electrospray emitters (236 emitters in 1 cm2) were made.

The devices were built on an SLA 3D printer Asiga Pico Plus27 that has a minimum Z pixelation of 1 μm (from the manufacturer) and a measured XY pixelation of 30 μm. The printers LED and array of miniature mirrors (DLP) forms the object, layer by layer, while the minimum Z pixelation comes from the specifications of the servo that moves the platform that supports the printed part during fabrication.

The printer creates solid objects with a precision in XY of 0.5 pixels per cm (∼15 μm/cm), while the servo that controls the Z pixelation has a movement resolution of 200 nm. The Asiga Pico Plus27 is part of a new generation of cost-competitive, commercial SLA 3-D printers with a tenfold improvement in the XY pixelation compared to standard additive manufacturing printers (∼250 μm), which makes possible the fabrication of microfluidics and other microsystems with adequate precision.

Read the full research paper here: http://ieeexplore.ieee.org/stamp/stamp.jsp?reload=true&arnumber=7268787

Another excellent example of how Asiga 3D printers are being used in the field of research in leading universities and laboratories globally.

A special thank you to Luis F. Velásquez-García and MIT.

See how our 3D printers can deliver significant benefits to your business. Take a look at our brochures by industry here.

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