Wednesday, July 7, 2010


The field of microfluidics is relatively new to Chemistry. It has only been around for a couple of decades, but it's popularity has increased in not only the the chemistry department, but engineering and physics as well. Microfluidics is the observation and controlling of fluids at microscopic levels. The benefits of microfluidics include its cheaper cost and the unique ability to obtain the necessary results in mere seconds.

The objectives of my project includes trying various ratios to obtain continuous droplet flow using the microfluidic process. The ratios are from both the Oil and Aqueous Phase machines that is connected to syringes. The Oil Phase machine has a syringe filled with three milliliters filled with oil. As for the Aqueous Phase machine, three syringes are used. Two of them are filled with three milliliters of methanol. As for the other syringe, three milliliters of water is used mixed with food coloring dye. These syringes are attached to wire tubes that are connected to the microfluidic chip with droplets that I'm trying to form.

Once the preparation process is completed, I set ratios for the Phases to run. During the runs, it is normal for the run to come to an abrupt halt due to stalling. Stalling occurs when there is too much pressure on the Aqueous phases. Which will cause the droplet making to come to a halt as well. Ways that I can prevent stalling includes using new syringes with new methanol, and just using as many ratios as I can hoping that I can achieve my goals for this summer.

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