3D printed fluidic valves for remote operation via external magnetic field
This paper reports a novel 3D-printed fluidic valve which is fabricated by projection-stereolithography (PSL) in combination with insertion of functional elements such as permanent magnets. We first constructed a PSL setup which can fabricate complicated three dimensional structures via layer-by-layer photocuring. Then, 3D fluidic valves which could be remotely controlled were designed. After the working mechanisms of proposed fluidic valves were thoroughly analyzed, they were fabricated with outlet orifice diameters of 0.5, 1, and 2 mm. The main housing of the valve assembly was printed, then, three permanent magnets were inserted into the part and the valve fabrication was completed by combining the end cap with an orifice and sealing. The completed valve was integrated within a 20-Fr (6.7-mm in diameter) medical catheter for evaluation. The flow rate through the valve could be controlled by changing positions of the inserted permanent magnets with an external magnetic field. With the applied pressure of 10 kPa, the flow rate was measured to be 131.07 mL/min that is only 8.78% lower than the system without the valve (143.68 mL/min). The results obtained in this work would be beneficial to further development of efficient fluidic valves for complicated 3D fluidic systems.
Keywords3D-printing Fluidic valve Magnetic field Projection-stereolithography
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