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Proceedings Paper

A latchable thermally activated phase change actuator for microfluidic systems
Author(s): Christiane Richter; Kai Sachsenheimer; Bastian E. Rapp
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Paper Abstract

Complex microfluidic systems often require a high number of individually controllable active components like valves and pumps. In this paper we present the development and optimization of a latchable thermally controlled phase change actuator which uses a solid/liquid phase transition of a phase change medium and the displacement of the liquid phase change medium to change and stabilize the two states of the actuator. Because the phase change is triggered by heat produced with ohmic resistors the used control signal is an electrical signal. In contrast to pneumatically activated membrane valves this concept allows the individual control of several dozen actuators with only two external pressure lines. Within this paper we show the general working principle of the actuator and demonstrate its general function and the scalability of the concept at an example of four actuators. Additionally we present the complete results of our studies to optimize the response behavior of the actuator – the influence of the heating power as well as the used phase change medium on melting and solidifying times.

Paper Details

Date Published: 18 March 2016
PDF: 6 pages
Proc. SPIE 9705, Microfluidics, BioMEMS, and Medical Microsystems XIV, 970503 (18 March 2016); doi: 10.1117/12.2209270
Show Author Affiliations
Christiane Richter, Karlsruhe Institute of Technology (Germany)
Kai Sachsenheimer, Karlsruhe Institute of Technology (Germany)
Bastian E. Rapp, Karlsruhe Institute of Technology (Germany)


Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 9705:
Microfluidics, BioMEMS, and Medical Microsystems XIV
Bonnie L. Gray; Holger Becker, Editor(s)

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