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Issue 13, 2010
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Mapping and manipulating temperature–concentration phase diagrams using microfluidics

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Abstract

We describe a microfluidic device for mapping phase diagrams of aqueous samples as a function of concentration and temperature. This double-layer (poly)dimethylsiloxane (PDMS) device contains a storage layer, in which hundreds of nanolitre sized aqueous droplets can be simultaneously formed and stored. A second layer, separated by a thin, water-permeable PDMS-membrane contains twelve reservoir channels filled with different salt solutions. When there is a difference between the concentrations of salt in the reservoir solutions and the aqueous droplets, water migrates across the membrane and causes the droplets to reversibly shrink or expand and the concentration of all solutes inside the droplets changes. We now incorporate a temperature stage that generates a linear gradient in temperature across the chip oriented perpendicular to the concentration gradient. Robust operation of several variants of the PhaseChip is demonstrated with examples in liquid–liquid phase separation and protein crystallization experiments.

Graphical abstract: Mapping and manipulating temperature–concentration phase diagrams using microfluidics

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Publication details

The article was received on 07 Dec 2009, accepted on 10 Mar 2010 and first published on 20 Apr 2010


Article type: Paper
DOI: 10.1039/B925661J
Citation: Lab Chip, 2010,10, 1696-1699

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    Mapping and manipulating temperature–concentration phase diagrams using microfluidics

    Š. Selimović, F. Gobeaux and S. Fraden, Lab Chip, 2010, 10, 1696
    DOI: 10.1039/B925661J

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