Currently, separation of whole blood samples on lab-on-a-chip systems is achieved via filters followed by analysis of the filtered matter such as counting of blood cells. Here, a micro-chip based on cantilever technology is developed, which enables simultaneous filtration and counting of micro-particles from a liquid. A hole-array is integrated into a micro-cantilever, which is inserted into a microfluidic channel perpendicular to the flow. A metal pad at the apex of the cantilever enables an optical read-out of the deflection of the cantilever. When a micro-particle is too large to pass a hole in the cantilever, clogging of the holes increases the flow resistance of the cantilever. This causes a bending of the device, which can be detected by the optical read-out system. By arranging an array of such cantilevers with different hole sizes, separation by size can be achieved. In this paper a proof of concept of the device is demonstrated by filtering and counting 20 mu m polystyrene beads dispersed in an aqueous solution.
- Physiological materials (e.g. blood, collagen, etc.)
- Tissue engineering
- Flow phenomena in quasi-one-dimensional systems