Sealing of the flow channel is an important aspect during integration of microfluidic channels and optical waveguides. The uneven topography of many waveguide-fabrication techniques will lead to leakage of the fluid channels. Planarization methods such as chemical mechanical polishing or the etch-back technique are possible, but troublesome. We present a simple but efficient alternative: By means of changing the waveguide layout, bonding pads are formed along the microfluidic channels. With the same height as the waveguide, they effectively prevent leakage and hermetically seal the channels during bonding. Negligible influence on light propagation is found when 10-mum-wide bonding pads are used. Fabricated microsystems with application in absorbance measurements and flow cytometry are presented.
|Publication status||Published - 2001|