Electrical Engineering
      and Computer Sciences

Electrical Engineering and Computer Sciences

COLLEGE OF ENGINEERING

UC Berkeley

Light-Actuated Digital Microfluidics for Large-Scale Droplet Manipulation

Shao Ning Pei and Ming C. Wu

EECS Department
University of California, Berkeley
Technical Report No. UCB/EECS-2011-124
December 6, 2011

http://www.eecs.berkeley.edu/Pubs/TechRpts/2011/EECS-2011-124.pdf

The ability to quickly perform a large number of chemical or biological reactions in parallel using low reagent volumes is a field well addressed by electrowetting-based digital microfluidics. Here we report on a new light-actuated digital microfluidics device which uses on-demand, ‘virtual’ electrodes defined by light patterns from a data projector for the large-scale, parallel manipulation of arbitrarily sized droplets. The device features a thin, high-quality aluminum oxide film deposited via atomic layer deposition (ALD), which allows aggressive scaling of the dielectric thickness while maintaining high device reliability. Due to the thin ALD dielectric layer, a significantly higher actuation force is imparted on droplets, which results in actuation speeds of up to 2 cm/s. Compared to our previous device, the actuation speed is 20x faster, but achieved at 250x lower optical power and 5x lower voltage. In this paper, we demonstrate the device’s ability to perform all the critical digital microfluidics functionalities: transport, creation, merging, and splitting. In addition, the ability to easily achieve parallel manipulation and array formation (8 by 12, 96 droplet format) of droplets will be presented.

Advisor: Ming C. Wu


BibTeX citation:

@mastersthesis{Pei:EECS-2011-124,
    Author = {Pei, Shao Ning and Wu, Ming C.},
    Title = {Light-Actuated Digital Microfluidics for Large-Scale Droplet Manipulation},
    School = {EECS Department, University of California, Berkeley},
    Year = {2011},
    Month = {Dec},
    URL = {http://www.eecs.berkeley.edu/Pubs/TechRpts/2011/EECS-2011-124.html},
    Number = {UCB/EECS-2011-124},
    Abstract = {The ability to quickly perform a large number of chemical or biological reactions in parallel using low reagent volumes is a field well addressed by electrowetting-based digital microfluidics. Here we report on a new light-actuated digital microfluidics device which uses on-demand, ‘virtual’ electrodes defined by light patterns from a data projector for the large-scale, parallel manipulation of arbitrarily sized droplets. The device features a thin, high-quality aluminum oxide film deposited via atomic layer deposition (ALD), which allows aggressive scaling of the dielectric thickness while maintaining high device reliability. Due to the thin ALD dielectric layer, a significantly higher actuation force is imparted on droplets, which results in actuation speeds of up to 2 cm/s. Compared to our previous device, the actuation speed is 20x faster, but achieved at 250x lower optical power and 5x lower voltage. In this paper, we demonstrate the device’s ability to perform all the critical digital microfluidics functionalities: transport, creation, merging, and splitting. In addition, the ability to easily achieve parallel manipulation and array formation (8 by 12, 96 droplet format) of droplets will be presented.}
}

EndNote citation:

%0 Thesis
%A Pei, Shao Ning
%A Wu, Ming C.
%T Light-Actuated Digital Microfluidics for Large-Scale Droplet Manipulation
%I EECS Department, University of California, Berkeley
%D 2011
%8 December 6
%@ UCB/EECS-2011-124
%U http://www.eecs.berkeley.edu/Pubs/TechRpts/2011/EECS-2011-124.html
%F Pei:EECS-2011-124