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Mechanical-Activated Digital Microfluidics with Gradient Surface Wettability


This paper reports a simple yet effective droplet manipulation approach that can displace aqueous droplets over a long distance within the working plane. Repeated patterns with surface gradient wettability were created on a superhydrophobic surface by laser irradiation. Aqueous droplets are moved on the patterns over a long distance under in-plane symmetric cyclic vibration. Typical droplet manipulation actions including droplet movement along a pre-determined trajectory, droplet mixing, and selective movement of multiple droplets were successfully demonstrated. Biochemical detection using this approach was demonstrated via a bicinchoninic acid (BCA) assay. Compared to current mechanical stimulation methods for droplet manipulation, our approach allows for long-distance droplet movement and simultaneous manipulation of multiple droplets without sacrificing the manipulation efficiency or increasing the cross-contamination risk. The device can be fabricated outside cleanrooms and operated without special equipment. It provides a solid technical basis for developing the next generation of affordable open channel microfluidic devices for various applications.

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Publication details

The article was received on 14 Sep 2018, accepted on 30 Nov 2018 and first published on 04 Dec 2018

Article type: Paper
DOI: 10.1039/C8LC00976G
Citation: Lab Chip, 2018, Accepted Manuscript
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    Mechanical-Activated Digital Microfluidics with Gradient Surface Wettability

    L. Qi, Y. Niu, C. Ruck and Y. Zhao, Lab Chip, 2018, Accepted Manuscript , DOI: 10.1039/C8LC00976G

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