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Published September 2007 | public
Journal Article Open

Design and fabrication of chemically robust three-dimensional microfluidic valves


A current problem in microfluidics is that poly(dimethylsiloxane) (PDMS), used to fabricate many microfluidic devices, is not compatible with most organic solvents. Fluorinated compounds are more chemically robust than PDMS but, historically, it has been nearly impossible to construct valves out of them by multilayer soft lithography (MSL) due to the difficulty of bonding layers made of non-stick fluoropolymers necessary to create traditional microfluidic valves. With our new three-dimensional (3D) valve design we can fabricate microfluidic devices from fluorinated compounds in a single monolithic layer that is resistant to most organic solvents with minimal swelling. This paper describes the design and development of 3D microfluidic valves by molding of a perfluoropolyether, termed Sifel, onto printed wax molds. The fabrication of Sifel-based microfluidic devices using this technique has great potential in chemical synthesis and analysis.

Additional Information

This journal is © The Royal Society of Chemistry 2007. Received 3rd April 2007, Accepted 18th June 2007. First published on the web 9th July 2007. The authors gratefully acknowledge financial support for this research by grants from the National Science Foundation (CHE-0515363 and DMR-0351848), and the National Institutes of Health (1R15AI65468-01). GH also acknowledges partial support from the National Institute of Health (1P20 MD001824-01). We are also grateful to Mr Claude C. McClure of Shin-Etsu Silicones, Inc. for providing the Sifel and product details. Electronic supplementary information (ESI) available: A graph of fluid flow versus actuating pressure. See DOI: 10.1039/b705031c


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