A self-powered microfluidic monodispersed droplet generator with capability of multi-sample introduction
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We presented a simple, self-powered microfluidic droplet generator capable of generating monodispersed droplets and performing multi-sample introduction. The sealed air-evacuated PDMS channels/chambers provide an internal pumping source, eliminating the needs of external bulky and expensive pumping equipments, and simplifying manual operations. Droplets produced by this droplet generator exhibited a narrow size distribution with a coefficient of variation below 3 %. The droplet size can be controlled in a flexible way by adjusting the hydraulic resistance of the channel networks or the hydrostatic pressure exerted on the inlets. Utilizing this droplet generator, multi-sample introduction was realized by demand-controlled run/stop of the droplet generation or by sequential addition of the different samples during the continuous droplet generation. This self-powered, portable, and easy-to-use droplet generator would extend the droplet-based applications into in-field analysis and facilitate exploitation of droplet microfluidics by non-technical users.
KeywordsAir-evacuated PDMS Droplet generation Multi-sample introduction Microfluidics
This work was supported by Basic Research in Scientific Instrument Program from National Natural Science Foundation of China (No. 31327001), Scientific Instrument Development Program from the Chinese Academy of Sciences (No. YZ201236), and Key Deployment Grant on Modern Agriculture from the Chinese Academy of Sciences (No. KSZD-EW-Z-021-1-5).
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