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Self-encapsulated hollow microstructures formed by electric field-assisted capillarity

Self-encapsulated hollow microstructures formed by electric field-assisted capillarity

Chen, H., Yu, W., Cargill, S., Patel, M.K., Bailey, C. ORCID: 0000-0002-9438-3879, Tonry, C. and Desmulliez, M.P.Y. (2012) Self-encapsulated hollow microstructures formed by electric field-assisted capillarity. Microfluidics and Nanofluidics, 13 (1). pp. 75-82. ISSN 1613-4982 (Print), 1613-4990 (Online) (doi:

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Hollow microstructures serve many useful applications in the fields of microsystems, chemistry, photonics,biology and others. Current fabrication methods of artificial hollow microstructures require multiple fabrication steps and expensive manufacturing tools. The paper reports a unique one-step fabrication process for the growth of hollow polymeric microstructures based on electric field assisted capillary action. This method demonstrates the manufacturing of self-encapsulated microstructures such as hollow microchannels and microcapsules of around 100-lm height from an initial polymer thickness of 22 lm. Microstructure caps of several microns thickness have been shown to keep their shape under bending or delamination from the substrate. The inner surface of hollow microstructures is shown to be smooth, which is difficult to achieve with current methods. More complicated structures,such as a microcapsule array connected with hollow microchannels, have also been manufactured with this method. Numerical simulation of the resist growth process using COMSOL Multiphysics finite element analysis software has resulted in good agreement between simulated and experimental results on the overall shape of the resulting structures. These results are very positive and demonstrate the speed, versatility and cost-effectiveness of the method.

Item Type: Article
Uncontrolled Keywords: microfluidics, electrohydrodynamic, instabilities, capillary, hollow microstucture, high-aspect ratio microfabrication
Subjects: T Technology > TA Engineering (General). Civil engineering (General)
T Technology > TJ Mechanical engineering and machinery
Pre-2014 Departments: School of Computing & Mathematical Sciences
School of Computing & Mathematical Sciences > Department of Mathematical Sciences
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Last Modified: 13 Mar 2019 11:33

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