, Volume 26, Issue 5, pp 3589–3599 | Cite as

Development of fabric-based microfluidic devices by wax printing

  • Azadeh Nilghaz
  • Xiaoqing Liu
  • Luyao Ma
  • Qian Huang
  • Xiaonan LuEmail author
Original Research


Fabric has emerged as an alternative to paper for the fabrication of microfluidic devices. Fabric could be easily manufactured using various natural and synthetic materials that contain a wide variety of functional groups, which can participate in binding to different types of molecules without further functionalization. To allow a rapid fabrication of more sophisticated fabric-based devices, we demonstrate that a commercial wax printer can be used to print 2D and 3D devices on fabric, followed by melting wax into fabric with heat treatment. The heating temperature and time were optimized to create the devices. The relationship between the width of the originally printed lines and the formed hydrophobic barriers was also investigated. The developed microfluidic fabric-based analytical devices show great potentials for real-life applications using colorimetric assay.


Fabric-based microfluidics Wax printing Fabrication method 



This study was supported by funds awarded to X.L. by Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council of Canada (NSERC CRDPJ 486586-15).

Supplementary material

10570_2019_2317_MOESM1_ESM.docx (389 kb)
Supplementary material 1 (DOCX 389 kb)


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Copyright information

© Springer Nature B.V. 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  • Azadeh Nilghaz
    • 1
  • Xiaoqing Liu
    • 1
  • Luyao Ma
    • 1
  • Qian Huang
    • 2
  • Xiaonan Lu
    • 1
    Email author
  1. 1.Food, Nutrition and Health Science, Faculty of Land and Food SystemsThe University of British ColumbiaVancouverCanada
  2. 2.Institute of PhotoelectronicesNankai UniversityTianjinChina

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