Nanotechnology Now

Our NanoNews Digest Sponsors



Heifer International

Wikipedia Affiliate Button


android tablet pc

Home > Press > Lab-on-a-chip Technology: Microfluidics Aids Major Advance in Environmental Testing

Abstract:
Microfluidics experts, Dolomite, in collaboration with the UK's National Centre for Atmospheric Science have announced the development of a new generation of microfluidics-based environmental testing equipment for use in air quality monitoring.

Lab-on-a-chip Technology: Microfluidics Aids Major Advance in Environmental Testing

UK | Posted on August 5th, 2008

Microfluidics is an exciting new field of science and engineering that enables very small-scale fluid control and analysis, allowing instrument manufacturers to develop smaller, more cost-effective and more powerful systems. With this lab-on-a-chip technology, entire complex chemical management and analysis systems can be created in a microfluidic chip and interfaced with, for example, electronics and optical detection systems.

Headed by Professor Alastair Lewis, the team from the National Centre for Atmospheric Science is undertaking initial studies to evaluate the feasibility of developing a portable microfluidics-based environmental testing module. Today's air monitoring procedure usually requires the collection of air samples at remote locations, which then have to be returned to a laboratory for analysis using large and expensive gas chromatography instruments. The procedure is slow and costly. Professor Lewis's research is aimed at developing a small-scale portable analysis system that will enable air quality to be analyzed and recorded in-situ. Such a system would have a dramatic effect on the speed of response to adverse changes in air quality.

"This is a great application of our technology," said Gillian Davis Regional Manager at Dolomite. "This is what microfluidics does best. It enables smaller, yet more powerful systems to be developed. Systems that may have been laboratory-based, can become more portable or even hand held, and at the same time can have increased accuracy and repeatability."

For this project Dolomite had to create a microfluidic device with an amazing 7.5m of micro-channel running through a 10cm square piece of glass. This is one of the largest devices and longest channels so far developed by Dolomite (this technology tends to be based in a smaller format). The fabrication processes used to create such a microfluidic device have some similarity to those used in the electronics industry. The channels through which the fluids flow and interact are etched into materials such as glass or polymers using similar photolithography processes, for example. The patterned layers are then very accurately aligned and fused together and drilled to provide microscopic ports through which the chemicals or gases can enter and leave the device.

"The real challenge with this project was the fusing of such large etched glass plates," said Gillian Davis. "Aligning the plates to ensure the etched microchannels were perfectly matched took a great deal of experience and put our capabilities to quite a test."

Dolomite is now considered to be a worldwide leader in Microfluidics. So much so, that in 2005 they won funding from the UK Department of Trade and Industry's Micro and Nano Technology (MNT) Manufacturing Initiative. This £2m funding, allowed Dolomite to establish excellent microfabrication facilities, with cleanrooms, precision glass processing facilities and applications laboratories.

"We are very pleased with both the progress of our development and the excellent support we have received from Dolomite," said Professor Alastair Lewis. "Dolomite has been very responsive to our demanding requests and has helped us make significant progress in recent months. It's clear from our research that microfluidics is very much an enabling technology for the next generation of environmental testing equipment. It offers us an exciting step forward in providing in-situ environmental monitoring capabilities with the possibility of more rapid response to adverse changes in air quality."

####

About UK's National Centre for Atmospheric Science (NCAS)
The National Centre for Atmospheric Science (NCAS) is a world leader in atmospheric science. With an annual budget of £9M, NCAS carries out research programmes in climate change science, atmospheric composition (including air quality), weather (including hazardous weather) and state-of-the-art technologies for observing and modelling the atmosphere (including a world-leading research aircraft). We have over 100 research scientists, including UK and world experts to work on our research programmes and provide support to the academic community. These programmes are distributed throughout the UK, at 15 UK universities and research institutes. NCAS also provides research outcomes for government policy-making. NCAS is a research centre of the Natural Environment Research Council with its headquarters at the University of Leeds. www.ncas.ac.uk

Professor Alastair Lewis is Director of the NCAS Atmospheric Composition programme, and is based at the Chemistry Department, University of York.

Dolomite Centre Ltd

Established in 2005 as the world’s first microfluidic application centre, Dolomite is focussed on working with customers to turn their concepts for microfluidic applications into reality. With an in-depth understanding of chemistry and the life sciences, expertise in microfabrication and microfluidics, together with instrument design and development capabilities, Dolomite is enabling some of the world’s top providers in fields as diverse as environmental monitoring, drug discovery and forensic science to deliver microfluidic systems to the market place. To find out more about Dolomite, please visit – www.dolomite-microfluidics.com

For more information, please click here

Contacts:
Dolomite Centre Ltd:
Dr Gillian Davis, Regional Manager
Tel: +44 1763 242491


Media: Richard Blackburn
Energi Technical Limited
Tel: +44 1603 278228


National Centre for Atmospheric Science:
Dr Louisa Watts
Science Communications and Knowledge Exchange Manager
Tel: +44 (0) 1793 411609
Mobile: +44 (0)7786214886

Copyright © UK's National Centre for Atmospheric Science (NCAS)

If you have a comment, please Contact us.

Issuers of news releases, not 7th Wave, Inc. or Nanotechnology Now, are solely responsible for the accuracy of the content.

Bookmark:
Delicious Digg Newsvine Google Yahoo Reddit Magnoliacom Furl Facebook

Related News Press

News and information

NMTI announces breakthrough solutions for HAMR nanoantenna for next-generation ultra-high density magnetic storage November 21st, 2014

Leica Microsystems Presents Universal Hybrid Detector for Single Molecule Detection and Imaging at SfN and ASCB: Leica HyD SMD - the Optimal Detector for Precise and Reliable SMD data November 20th, 2014

Silver Nanoparticles Produced in Iran from Forest Plants Extract November 20th, 2014

Nano Sorbents Able to Remove Pollutions Caused by Oil Derivatives November 20th, 2014

Microfluidics/Nanofluidics

“Dolomite’s Resealable Chip Interface offers easy access to microfluidic chip surface” November 10th, 2014

Dolomite and Lab on a Chip launch Productizing Science® Competition 2015 October 7th, 2014

Dolomite to launch Meros TCU-100 temperature controller at Lab-on-a-Chip & Microarray World Congress September 15th, 2014

First Colloid and Polymer Science Lecture awarded to Orlin D. Velev: Chemical engineer honored for outstanding research in colloid science September 12th, 2014

Announcements

NMTI announces breakthrough solutions for HAMR nanoantenna for next-generation ultra-high density magnetic storage November 21st, 2014

Leica Microsystems Presents Universal Hybrid Detector for Single Molecule Detection and Imaging at SfN and ASCB: Leica HyD SMD - the Optimal Detector for Precise and Reliable SMD data November 20th, 2014

Silver Nanoparticles Produced in Iran from Forest Plants Extract November 20th, 2014

Nano Sorbents Able to Remove Pollutions Caused by Oil Derivatives November 20th, 2014

Environment

Silver Nanoparticles Produced in Iran from Forest Plants Extract November 20th, 2014

Nano Sorbents Able to Remove Pollutions Caused by Oil Derivatives November 20th, 2014

Application of Nanocomposites in Production of Photocatalysts for Water Treatment November 17th, 2014

BRAAVOO will design an unmanned surveying vessel and marine buoy that carry biosensors to monitor marine pollutants November 12th, 2014

Alliances/Partnerships/Distributorships

UO-industry collaboration points to improved nanomaterials: University of Oregon microscope puts spotlight on the surface structure of quantum dots for designing new solar devices November 20th, 2014

A novel method for identifying the body’s ‘noisiest’ networks November 19th, 2014

Field-emission plug-and-play solution for microwave electron guns: To simplify the electron emission mechanism involved in microwave electron guns, a team of researchers has created and demonstrated a field-emission plug-and-play solution based on ultrananocrystalline diamond November 18th, 2014

VDMA Electronics Production Equipment: Growth track for 2014 and 2015 confirmed: Business climate survey shows robust industry sector November 14th, 2014

NanoNews-Digest
The latest news from around the world, FREE




  Premium Products
NanoNews-Custom
Only the news you want to read!
 Learn More
NanoTech-Transfer
University Technology Transfer & Patents
 Learn More
NanoStrategies
Full-service, expert consulting
 Learn More












ASP
Nanotechnology Now Featured Books




NNN

The Hunger Project







© Copyright 1999-2014 7th Wave, Inc. All Rights Reserved PRIVACY POLICY :: CONTACT US :: STATS :: SITE MAP :: ADVERTISE