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A hydrogel-driven microfluidic suction pump with a high flow rate

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Abstract

We propose a portable, non-powered, long-term working suction pump with a high flow rate for microfluidic devices. The pump is driven by a superabsorbent polymer enclosed in a housing with porous fins to accelerate water absorption. We experimentally demonstrate that the pump creates an outstanding flow rate of more than 80 μl min−1 and an absorption volume of ∼20 ml. We address the key design principles underlying the outstanding performance of the pump. As an exemplary application, we constructed a portable power generator by combining the hydrogel pump with a reverse electrodialysis (RED) device. This portable system, powered only by KCl solutions with different ion concentrations, exhibited an output density of ∼70 μW cm−2 for more than an hour. The proposed versatile hydrogel pump could provide a breakthrough for developing various portable microfluidic systems.

Graphical abstract: A hydrogel-driven microfluidic suction pump with a high flow rate

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Publication details

The article was received on 20 Jan 2019, accepted on 02 Apr 2019 and first published on 09 Apr 2019


Article type: Paper
DOI: 10.1039/C9LC00062C
Citation: Lab Chip, 2019, Advance Article

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    A hydrogel-driven microfluidic suction pump with a high flow rate

    J. Seo, C. Wang, S. Chang, J. Park and W. Kim, Lab Chip, 2019, Advance Article , DOI: 10.1039/C9LC00062C

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