Artificial microfluidic skin for in vitro perspiration simulation and testing
To expedite development of any skin wearable material, product, or device, an artificial perspiration (sweat) simulator can provide improved ease, cost, control, flexibility, and reproducibility in comparison to human or animal tests. Reported here is a human perspiration mimicking device including microreplicated skin-texture. A bottom 0.2 μm track etched polycarbonate membrane layer provides flow-rate control while a top photo-curable layer provides skin-like features such as sweat pore density, hydrophobicity, and wetting hysteresis. Key capabilities of this sweat simulator include: constant ‘sweat’ rate density without bubble-point variation even down to ∼1 L h−1 m−2; replication of the 2 pores mm−2 pore-density and the ∼50 μm texture of human skin; simple gravity-fed flow control; low-cost and disposable construction.