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Issue 7, 2008
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Two simple and rugged designs for creating microfluidic sheath flow

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Abstract

A simple design capable of 2-dimensional hydrodynamic focusing is proposed and successfully demonstrated. In the past, most microfluidic sheath flow systems have often only confined the sample solution on the sides, leaving the top and bottom of the sample stream in contact with the floor and ceiling of the channel. While relatively simple to build, these designs increase the risk of adsorption of sample components to the top and bottom of the channel. A few designs have been successful in completely sheathing the sample stream, but these typically require multiple sheath inputs and several alignment steps. In the designs presented here, full sheathing is accomplished using as few as one sheath input, which eliminates the need to carefully balance the flow of two or more sheath inlets. The design is easily manufactured using current microfabrication techniques. Furthermore, the sample and sheath fluid can be subsequently separated for recapture of the sample fluid or re-use of the sheath fluid. Designs were demonstrated in poly(dimethylsiloxane) (PDMS) using soft lithography and poly(methyl methacrylate) (PMMA) using micromilling and laser ablation.

Graphical abstract: Two simple and rugged designs for creating microfluidic sheath flow

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Publication details

The article was received on 18 Dec 2007, accepted on 08 Apr 2008 and first published on 13 May 2008


Article type: Paper
DOI: 10.1039/B719381E
Citation: Lab Chip, 2008,8, 1097-1103
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    Two simple and rugged designs for creating microfluidic sheath flow

    P. B. Howell Jr, J. P. Golden, L. R. Hilliard, J. S. Erickson, D. R. Mott and F. S. Ligler, Lab Chip, 2008, 8, 1097
    DOI: 10.1039/B719381E

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