The CNSI Microfluidics Lab was developed by CNSI as a campus-wide resource for researchers who use custom-made microfluidic devices and other scientific instruments in their work. The lab currently has users from research groups in mechanical, electrical and chemical engineering; chemistry, biology, materials, physics, MRL, SSLEEC, and Media Arts and Technology. The lab also supports off-campus users.
The Microfluidics lab supports two distinct groups of researchers: experienced device fabricators who benefit from having a comprehensive tool set in one location as well as researchers who have creative ideas about using novel microfluidic devices, but don’t have much experience making them. The lab also supports undergraduates working on course-related projects.
The lab has tools for making several different classes of microfluidic devices: cast PDMS, directly machined (laser and mill) polymer devices, and thermally molded polymer flow channels. CNC drills and mills are available for machining ports and vias in Silicon and glass using diamond tooling, and aligned punches are available for creating ports in polymers. The Microfluidic Lab also has tools for surface activation using ozone and vapor deposition of silanes. The lab supports custom-made bond aligning tools and microscopes for inspection. A high-resolution 3D printer and CNC mill are available for making molds, fixtures and experimental apparatus. The lab also has a full suite of optical microscopes for inspection.
Detailed information about tools and resources in the lab, and instructions for becoming a user can be found on the lab's Wiki.