Magnetohydrodynamic-based Laboratories on a Chip for Analysis of Biomolecules
National Aeronautics and Space Administration
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SFC Fluidics, LLC
21 West Mountain, Suite 122, Fayetteville, AR, 72701-6086
Socially and Economically Disadvantaged:
AbstractA laboratory-on-a-chip design based on magnetohydrodynamic (MHD) microfluidics and integrated microelectrochemical detection is proposed. The proposed device is well-suited for the rapid, automatic and highly sensitive detection of a wide variety of biomolecules of potential interest to NASA. Interest in MHD microfluidic devices has previously been limited by their tendency to generate obstructive bubbles and to suffer quick erosion of the electrodes. The proposed approach solves these problems and provides for very high flow rates and long electrode lifetimes. In addition, the proposed device can be operated at very low voltage, and contain no moving parts, features that currently are not available with other forms of microfluidic devices. In the present approach, the many significant advantages of MHD-based microfluidic systems are retained, including compatibility with a much wider variety of materials and solvents than electrokinetic based systems. An integrated, self-contained microelectrochemical detection approach can be used in turbid, colored, or complex samples with a minimum or absence of false positives and false negatives. Together, the two technologies offer a unique platform for biomolecular analysis. For space applications where minimum sample handling steps and maximum automation are typically highly desired features, the proposed system should excel.
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