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Micromachines, Volume 8, Issue 7 (July 2017)

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Cover Story In this study, the potential of piezoelectric actuated micro-electromechanical system (MEMS) [...] Read more.
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Editorial

Jump to: Research, Review, Other

Open AccessEditorial 3D Printing and Bioprinting in MEMS Technology
Micromachines 2017, 8(7), 229; doi:10.3390/mi8070229
Received: 19 July 2017 / Revised: 20 July 2017 / Accepted: 20 July 2017 / Published: 21 July 2017
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Abstract
3D printing and bioprinting have advanced significantly in printing resolution in recent years, which presents a great potential for fabricating small and complex features suitable for microelectromechanical systems (MEMS) with new functionalities. This special issue aims to give a glimpse into the future
[...] Read more.
3D printing and bioprinting have advanced significantly in printing resolution in recent years, which presents a great potential for fabricating small and complex features suitable for microelectromechanical systems (MEMS) with new functionalities. This special issue aims to give a glimpse into the future of this research field. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Bioprinting and 3D Printing in MEMS Technology)

Research

Jump to: Editorial, Review, Other

Open AccessArticle Analysis of Hydrodynamic Mechanism on Particles Focusing in Micro-Channel Flows
Micromachines 2017, 8(7), 197; doi:10.3390/mi8070197
Received: 5 May 2017 / Revised: 15 June 2017 / Accepted: 19 June 2017 / Published: 22 June 2017
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Abstract
In this paper, the hydrodynamic mechanism of moving particles in laminar micro-channel flows was numerically investigated. A hydrodynamic criterion was proposed to determine whether particles in channel flows can form a focusing pattern or not. A simple formula was derived to demonstrate how
[...] Read more.
In this paper, the hydrodynamic mechanism of moving particles in laminar micro-channel flows was numerically investigated. A hydrodynamic criterion was proposed to determine whether particles in channel flows can form a focusing pattern or not. A simple formula was derived to demonstrate how the focusing position varies with Reynolds number and particle size. Based on this proposed criterion, a possible hydrodynamic mechanism was discussed as to why the particles would not be focused if their sizes were too small or the channel Reynolds number was too low. The Re-λ curve (Re, λ respectively represents the channel-based Reynolds number and the particle’s diameter scaled by the channel) was obtained using the data fitting with a least square method so as to obtain a parameter range of the focusing pattern. In addition, the importance of the particle rotation to the numerical modeling for the focusing of particles was discussed in view of the hydrodynamics. This research is expected to deepen the understanding of the particle transport phenomena in bounded flow, either in micro or macro fluidic scope. Full article
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Open AccessArticle A Viscosity-Based Model for Bubble-Propelled Catalytic Micromotors
Micromachines 2017, 8(7), 198; doi:10.3390/mi8070198
Received: 28 March 2017 / Revised: 17 June 2017 / Accepted: 19 June 2017 / Published: 23 June 2017
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Abstract
Micromotors have shown significant potential for diverse future applications. However, a poor understanding of the propelling mechanism hampers its further applications. In this study, an accurate mechanical model of the micromotor has been proposed by considering the geometric asymmetry and fluid viscosity based
[...] Read more.
Micromotors have shown significant potential for diverse future applications. However, a poor understanding of the propelling mechanism hampers its further applications. In this study, an accurate mechanical model of the micromotor has been proposed by considering the geometric asymmetry and fluid viscosity based on hydrodynamic principles. The results obtained from the proposed model are in a good agreement with the experimental results. The effects of the semi-cone angle on the micromotor are re-analyzed. Furthermore, other geometric parameters, like the length-radius aspect ratio, exert great impact on the velocity. It is also observed that micromotors travel much slower in highly viscous solutions and, hence, viscosity plays an important role. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Locomotion at Small Scales: From Biology to Artificial Systems)
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Open AccessArticle Parametric Study of an Electroosmotic Micromixer with Heterogeneous Charged Surface Patches
Micromachines 2017, 8(7), 199; doi:10.3390/mi8070199
Received: 4 May 2017 / Revised: 15 June 2017 / Accepted: 19 June 2017 / Published: 23 June 2017
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Abstract
A T-shaped micromixer featuring electroosmotic flow with heterogeneous charged surface patches on the channel walls was analyzed, and an improved design was proposed to enhance mixing performance. Numerical analysis was performed using steady Navier-Stokes equations with an additional electrokinetic body force. The numerical
[...] Read more.
A T-shaped micromixer featuring electroosmotic flow with heterogeneous charged surface patches on the channel walls was analyzed, and an improved design was proposed to enhance mixing performance. Numerical analysis was performed using steady Navier-Stokes equations with an additional electrokinetic body force. The numerical results for species concentration were validated with available experimental data. A parametric analysis of the micromixer was performed by varying channel height, channel width, patch width, and externally applied voltage. The effects of these parameters on the flow structure and mixing performance were analyzed in detail. A quantitative measurement based upon the mass variance was employed to quantify the mixing performance. Numerical results of the parametric study were used to propose an improved micromixer design with spacing between adjacent charged patches. The proposed design provided a more favorable flow structure to allow for enhanced mixing performance. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Micro/Nano-Chip Electrokinetics, Volume II)
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Open AccessFeature PaperArticle Potential of Piezoelectric MEMS Resonators for Grape Must Fermentation Monitoring
Micromachines 2017, 8(7), 200; doi:10.3390/mi8070200
Received: 27 March 2017 / Revised: 8 June 2017 / Accepted: 20 June 2017 / Published: 26 June 2017
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Abstract
In this study grape must fermentation is monitored using a self-actuating/self-sensing piezoelectric micro-electromechanical system (MEMS) resonator. The sensor element is excited in an advanced roof tile-shaped vibration mode, which ensures high Q-factors in liquids (i.e., Q ~100 in isopropanol), precise resonance frequency
[...] Read more.
In this study grape must fermentation is monitored using a self-actuating/self-sensing piezoelectric micro-electromechanical system (MEMS) resonator. The sensor element is excited in an advanced roof tile-shaped vibration mode, which ensures high Q-factors in liquids (i.e., Q ~100 in isopropanol), precise resonance frequency analysis, and a fast measurement procedure. Two sets of artificial model solutions are prepared, representing an ordinary and a stuck/sluggish wine fermentation process. The precision and reusability of the sensor are shown using repetitive measurements (10 times), resulting in standard deviations of the measured resonance frequencies of ~0.1%, Q-factor of ~11%, and an electrical conductance peak height of ~12%, respectively. With the applied evaluation procedure, moderate standard deviations of ~1.1% with respect to density values are achieved. Based on these results, the presented sensor concept is capable to distinguish between ordinary and stuck wine fermentation, where the evolution of the wine density associated with the decrease in sugar and the increase in ethanol concentrations during fermentation processes causes a steady increase in the resonance frequency for an ordinary fermentation. Finally, the first test measurements in real grape must are presented, showing a similar trend in the resonance frequency compared to the results of an artificial solutions, thus proving that the presented sensor concept is a reliable and reusable platform for grape must fermentation monitoring. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Piezoelectric MEMS)
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Open AccessArticle A Simple Extraction Method of Young’s Modulus for Multilayer Films in MEMS Applications
Micromachines 2017, 8(7), 201; doi:10.3390/mi8070201
Received: 8 May 2017 / Revised: 12 June 2017 / Accepted: 20 June 2017 / Published: 23 June 2017
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Abstract
Based on the first resonance frequency measurement of multilayer beams, a simple extraction method has been developed to extract the Young’s modulus of individual layers. To verify this method, the double-layer cantilever, as a typical example, is analyzed to simplify the situation and
[...] Read more.
Based on the first resonance frequency measurement of multilayer beams, a simple extraction method has been developed to extract the Young’s modulus of individual layers. To verify this method, the double-layer cantilever, as a typical example, is analyzed to simplify the situation and finite element modeling (FEM) is used in consideration of the buckling and unbuckling situation of cantilevers. The first resonance frequencies, which are obtained by ANSYS (15.0, ANSYS Inc., Pittsburgh, PA, USA) with a group of thirteen setting values of Young’s modulus in the polysilicon layer are brought into the theoretical formulas to obtain a new group of Young’s modulus in the polysilicon layer. The reliability and feasibility of the theoretical method are confirmed, according to the slight differences between the setting values and the results of the theoretical model. In the experiment, a series of polysilicon-metal double-layer cantilevers were fabricated. Digital holographic microscopy (DHM) (Lyncée Tech, Lausanne, Switzerland) is used to distinguish the buckled from the unbuckled. A scanning laser Doppler vibrometer (LDV) (Polytech GmbH, Berlin, Germany) system is used to measure the first resonance frequencies of them. After applying the measurement results into the theoretical modulus, the average values of Young’s modulus in the polysilicon and gold layers are 151.78 GPa and 75.72 GPa, respectively. The extracted parameters are all within the rational ranges, compared with the available results. Full article
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Open AccessArticle Design and Modeling of Polysilicon Electrothermal Actuators for a MEMS Mirror with Low Power Consumption
Micromachines 2017, 8(7), 203; doi:10.3390/mi8070203
Received: 14 January 2017 / Revised: 19 June 2017 / Accepted: 20 June 2017 / Published: 25 June 2017
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Abstract
Endoscopic optical-coherence tomography (OCT) systems require low cost mirrors with small footprint size, out-of-plane deflections and low bias voltage. These requirements can be achieved with electrothermal actuators based on microelectromechanical systems (MEMS). We present the design and modeling of polysilicon electrothermal actuators for
[...] Read more.
Endoscopic optical-coherence tomography (OCT) systems require low cost mirrors with small footprint size, out-of-plane deflections and low bias voltage. These requirements can be achieved with electrothermal actuators based on microelectromechanical systems (MEMS). We present the design and modeling of polysilicon electrothermal actuators for a MEMS mirror (100 μm × 100 μm × 2.25 μm). These actuators are composed by two beam types (2.25 μm thickness) with different cross-section area, which are separated by 2 μm gap. The mirror and actuators are designed through the Sandia Ultra-planar Multi-level MEMS Technology V (SUMMiT V®) process, obtaining a small footprint size (1028 μm × 1028 µm) for actuators of 550 µm length. The actuators have out-of-plane displacements caused by low dc voltages and without use material layers with distinct thermal expansion coefficients. The temperature behavior along the actuators is calculated through analytical models that include terms of heat energy generation, heat conduction and heat energy loss. The force method is used to predict the maximum out-of-plane displacements in the actuator tip as function of supplied voltage. Both analytical models, under steady-state conditions, employ the polysilicon resistivity as function of the temperature. The electrothermal-and structural behavior of the actuators is studied considering different beams dimensions (length and width) and dc bias voltages from 0.5 to 2.5 V. For 2.5 V, the actuator of 550 µm length reaches a maximum temperature, displacement and electrical power of 115 °C, 10.3 µm and 6.3 mW, respectively. The designed actuation mechanism can be useful for MEMS mirrors of different sizes with potential application in endoscopic OCT systems that require low power consumption. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue MEMS Mirrors)
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Open AccessFeature PaperArticle Tuneable Liquid Crystal Micro-Lens Array for Image Contrast Enhancement in a Pixelated Thin Film Photo-Transistor Flat Panel Imager
Micromachines 2017, 8(7), 205; doi:10.3390/mi8070205
Received: 12 June 2017 / Revised: 20 June 2017 / Accepted: 23 June 2017 / Published: 26 June 2017
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Abstract
We propose and demonstrate the concept of using a tuneable liquid crystal micro-lens (LCML) array to improve the image contrast of a pixelated thin film photo-transistor (TFPT) flat panel imager. Such a device can be used to image contents on paper-based media and
[...] Read more.
We propose and demonstrate the concept of using a tuneable liquid crystal micro-lens (LCML) array to improve the image contrast of a pixelated thin film photo-transistor (TFPT) flat panel imager. Such a device can be used to image contents on paper-based media and display a magnified version on a flat panel display for elderly or visually impaired people. Practical aspects including device physical geometry, object scattering profile, LC material, and focusing effect of LCML on an object are considered during the design process with the support of ZEMAX simulations. An optimised effective focal length (EFL) has been calculated for the designed LCML to best relay the objects or contents on a paper to the TFPT pixel plane. The designed LCML devices are fabricated with the optimised EFL, and they have good phase depth profiles which are close to a spherical lens profile. Preliminary test results show that the combination of a TFPT imager with an LCML array can make the image contrast more than two times better than that using the TFPT imager alone. The tuneable EFL of the developed LCMLs are useful in the situation where the LCML is not in direct contact with the imaged object. Full article
(This article belongs to the collection Laser Micromachining and Microfabrication)
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Open AccessArticle Flexural Properties and Fracture Behavior of Nanoporous Alumina film by Three-Point Bending Test
Micromachines 2017, 8(7), 206; doi:10.3390/mi8070206
Received: 30 May 2017 / Revised: 17 June 2017 / Accepted: 21 June 2017 / Published: 27 June 2017
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Abstract
This study investigated the influence of porosity on the flexural property of a nanoporous alumina film. When the porosity of the alumina film increased, both bending strength and modulus declined. The results from the bending test revealed that the setting of the film
[...] Read more.
This study investigated the influence of porosity on the flexural property of a nanoporous alumina film. When the porosity of the alumina film increased, both bending strength and modulus declined. The results from the bending test revealed that the setting of the film during the bending test had significant influence on the flexural property. Fracture only occurred when the porous side of the alumina film suffered tensile stress. The ability to resist fracture in the barrier layer was higher than in the porous side; the magnitude of the bending strength was amplified when the barrier layer sustained tensile stress. When the porous layer suffered a tensile stress, the bending strength decreased from 182.4 MPa to 47.7 Mpa as the porosity increased from 22.7% to 51.7%; meanwhile, the modulus reduced from 82.7 GPa to 17.9 GPa. In this study, the most important finding from fractographic analysis suggested that there were a localized plastic deformations and layered ruptures at the porous side of the alumina film when a load was applied. The fracture behavior of the nanoporous alumina film observed in the present work was notably different from general ceramic materials and might be related to its asymmetric nanostructure. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Selected Papers from IEEE ICASI 2017)
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Open AccessArticle Electroceutical Approach for Impairing the Motility of Pathogenic Bacterium Using a Microfluidic Platform
Micromachines 2017, 8(7), 207; doi:10.3390/mi8070207
Received: 23 May 2017 / Revised: 20 June 2017 / Accepted: 27 June 2017 / Published: 29 June 2017
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Abstract
Electrotaxis, or galvanotaxis, refers to the migration pattern of cells induced in response to electrical potential. Electrotaxis has not been explored in detail in bacterial cells; information regarding the impact of current on pathogenic bacteria is severely lacking. Using microfluidic platforms and optical
[...] Read more.
Electrotaxis, or galvanotaxis, refers to the migration pattern of cells induced in response to electrical potential. Electrotaxis has not been explored in detail in bacterial cells; information regarding the impact of current on pathogenic bacteria is severely lacking. Using microfluidic platforms and optical microscopy, we designed a series of single- and multi-cue experiments to assess the impact of varying electrical currents and acetic acid concentrations on bacterial motility dynamics in pathogenic multi-drug resistant (MDR) strains of Pseudomonas aeruginosa and Escherichia coli. The use of the microfluidic platform allows for single-cue experiments where electrical current is supplied at a range that is biocidal to bacteria and multi-cue experiments where acetic acid is combined with current to enhance disinfection. These strategies may offer substantial therapeutic benefits, specifically for the treatment of biofilm infections, such as those found in the wound environment. Our results showed that an application of current in combination with acetic acid has profound inhibitory effects on MDR strains of P. aeruginosa and E. coli, even with brief applications. Specifically, E. coli motility dynamics and cell survival were significantly impaired starting at a concentration of 0.125 mA of direct current (DC) and 0.31% acetic acid, while P. aeruginosa was impaired at 0.70 mA and 0.31% acetic acid. As these strains are relevant wound pathogens, it is likely that this strategy would be effective against similar strains in vivo and could represent a new approach to hasten wound healing. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Biomedical Microfluidic Devices)
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Open AccessArticle Research on the Drilling Performance of a Helical Point Micro Drill with Different Geometry Parameters
Micromachines 2017, 8(7), 208; doi:10.3390/mi8070208
Received: 29 May 2017 / Revised: 18 June 2017 / Accepted: 22 June 2017 / Published: 29 June 2017
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Abstract
During the micro-drilling process of stainless steel, the wear, fracture, and breakage of the micro-drill easily occur. Micro-drill geometry parameters have significant influence on the drilling performance of the micro-drill. Nowadays, the helical point micro-drill is proposed and its improved drilling performance is
[...] Read more.
During the micro-drilling process of stainless steel, the wear, fracture, and breakage of the micro-drill easily occur. Micro-drill geometry parameters have significant influence on the drilling performance of the micro-drill. Nowadays, the helical point micro-drill is proposed and its improved drilling performance is validated by some researchers. In this study, to analyze the effect of geometry parameters of the helical point micro-drill on drilling performance, the mathematical models of the helical flank and ground flute are proposed, and the cutting lip shape, rake angle, and uncut chip thickness are calculated using MATLAB software. Then, based on the orthogonal tests, nine kinds of micro-drills with different point angles, web thicknesses, and helix angles are fabricated using a six-axis CNC tool grinder, and micro-drilling experiments on 1Cr18Ni9Ti stainless steel are carried out. The drilling force, the burr height, and the hole wall quality are measured and observed. The results show that the point angle is the main contributing factor for the thrust force and burr height, and the web thickness is the main contributing factor for the micro hole wall quality. The increased point angle offers a larger thrust force, but gives rise to a smaller exit burr. A larger web thickness leads to a larger thrust force and burr height, and results in a poor surface quality. With the helix angle increased, the thrust force and burr height decreases, and the surface quality of micro-hole improves. The geometry parameters with a point angle 70°, a point angle of 40°, and web thickness ratio of 0.2 can used to improve the drilling performance of the helical point micro-drill. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue State-Of-The-Art Micromachining)
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Open AccessArticle Analysis of the Diffusion Process by pH Indicator in Microfluidic Chips for Liposome Production
Micromachines 2017, 8(7), 209; doi:10.3390/mi8070209
Received: 28 April 2017 / Revised: 8 June 2017 / Accepted: 17 June 2017 / Published: 1 July 2017
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Abstract
In recent years, the development of nano- and micro-particles has attracted considerable interest from researchers and enterprises, because of the potential utility of such particles as drug delivery vehicles. Amongst the different techniques employed for the production of nanoparticles, microfluidic-based methods have proven
[...] Read more.
In recent years, the development of nano- and micro-particles has attracted considerable interest from researchers and enterprises, because of the potential utility of such particles as drug delivery vehicles. Amongst the different techniques employed for the production of nanoparticles, microfluidic-based methods have proven to be the most effective for controlling particle size and dispersity, and for achieving high encapsulation efficiency of bioactive compounds. In this study, we specifically focus on the production of liposomes, spherical vesicles formed by a lipid bilayer encapsulating an aqueous core. The formation of liposomes in microfluidic devices is often governed by diffusive mass transfer of chemical species at the liquid interface between a solvent (i.e., alcohol) and a non-solvent (i.e., water). In this work, we developed a new approach for the analysis of mixing processes within microfluidic devices. The method relies on the use of a pH indicator, and we demonstrate its utility by characterizing the transfer of ethanol and water within two different microfluidic architectures. Our approach represents an effective route to experimentally characterize diffusion and advection processes governing the formation of vesicular/micellar systems in microfluidics, and can also be employed to validate the results of numerical modelling. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Microfluidic Technologies for Drug Delivery)
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Open AccessFeature PaperArticle New Endoscopic Imaging Technology Based on MEMS Sensors and Actuators
Micromachines 2017, 8(7), 210; doi:10.3390/mi8070210
Received: 31 December 2016 / Revised: 9 March 2017 / Accepted: 10 March 2017 / Published: 2 July 2017
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Abstract
Over the last decade, optical fiber-based forms of microscopy and endoscopy have extended the realm of applicability for many imaging modalities. Optical fiber-based imaging modalities permit the use of remote illumination sources and enable flexible forms supporting the creation of portable and hand-held
[...] Read more.
Over the last decade, optical fiber-based forms of microscopy and endoscopy have extended the realm of applicability for many imaging modalities. Optical fiber-based imaging modalities permit the use of remote illumination sources and enable flexible forms supporting the creation of portable and hand-held imaging instrumentations to interrogate within hollow tissue cavities. A common challenge in the development of such devices is the design and integration of miniaturized optical and mechanical components. Until recently, microelectromechanical systems (MEMS) sensors and actuators have been playing a key role in shaping the miniaturization of these components. This is due to the precision mechanics of MEMS, microfabrication techniques, and optical functionality enabling a wide variety of movable and tunable mirrors, lenses, filters, and other optical structures. Many promising results from MEMS based optical fiber endoscopy have demonstrated great potentials for clinical translation. In this article, reviews of MEMS sensors and actuators for various fiber-optical endoscopy such as fluorescence, optical coherence tomography, confocal, photo-acoustic, and two-photon imaging modalities will be discussed. This advanced MEMS based optical fiber endoscopy can provide cellular and molecular features with deep tissue penetration enabling guided resections and early cancer assessment to better treatment outcomes. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue MEMS/NEMS for Biomedical Imaging and Sensing)
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Open AccessArticle DC Microplasma Jet for Local a:C-H Deposition Operated in SEM Chamber
Micromachines 2017, 8(7), 211; doi:10.3390/mi8070211
Received: 31 May 2017 / Revised: 21 June 2017 / Accepted: 1 July 2017 / Published: 3 July 2017
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Abstract
A DC micro plasma jet for local micro deposition of a:C-H film in the ambient vacuum of scanning electron microscope (SEM) chamber is proposed. Acetylene (C2H2) gas was locally fed into the chamber through an orifice shaped gas nozzle
[...] Read more.
A DC micro plasma jet for local micro deposition of a:C-H film in the ambient vacuum of scanning electron microscope (SEM) chamber is proposed. Acetylene (C2H2) gas was locally fed into the chamber through an orifice shaped gas nozzle (OGN) at 6.6 sccm in flow rate by applying 80 kPa-inlet pressure with an additional direct pumping system equipped on the SEM chamber. As a cathode, a cut of n-type silicon (Si) wafer was placed right in front of the OGN at 200 μm gap distance. By applying a positive DC voltage to the OGN, C2H2 plasma was generated locally between the electrodes. During discharge, the voltage increased and the current decreased due to deposition of insulating film on the Si wafer with resulting in automatic termination of discharge at the constant source voltage. A symmetric mountain-shaped a:C-H film of 5 μm height was deposited at the center by operation for 15 s. Films were deposited with variation of gas flow rate, gap distance, voltage and current, and deposition time. The films were directly observed by SEM and analyzed by surface profiler and by Raman spectroscopy. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Microplasma Devices)
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Open AccessArticle Simulation Analysis of Improving Microfluidic Heterogeneous Immunoassay Using Induced Charge Electroosmosis on a Floating Gate
Micromachines 2017, 8(7), 212; doi:10.3390/mi8070212
Received: 7 June 2017 / Revised: 2 July 2017 / Accepted: 3 July 2017 / Published: 4 July 2017
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Abstract
On-chip immuno-sensors are a hot topic in the microfluidic community, which is usually limited by slow diffusion-dominated transport of analytes in confined microchannels. Specifically, the antigen-antibody binding reaction at a functionalized area cannot be provided with enough antigen source near the reaction surface,
[...] Read more.
On-chip immuno-sensors are a hot topic in the microfluidic community, which is usually limited by slow diffusion-dominated transport of analytes in confined microchannels. Specifically, the antigen-antibody binding reaction at a functionalized area cannot be provided with enough antigen source near the reaction surface, since a small diffusion flux cannot match with the quick rate of surface reaction, which influences the response time and sensitivity of on-chip heterogeneous immunoassay. In this work, we propose a method to enhance the transportation of biomolecules to the surface of an antibody-immobilized electrode with induce charge electroosmotic (ICEO) convection in a low concentration suspension, so as to improve the binding efficiency of microfluidic heterogeneous immunoassays. The circular stirring fluid motion of ICEO on the surface of a floating gate electrode at the channel bottom accelerates the transport of freely suspended antigen towards the wall-immobilized antibodies. We investigate the dependence of binding efficiency on voltage magnitude and field frequency of the applied alternate current (AC) electrical field. The binding rate yields a factor of 5.4 higher binding for an applied voltage of 4 V at 10 Hz when the Damkohler number is 1000. The proposed microfluidic immuno-sensor technology of a simple electrode structure using ICEO convective fluid flow around floating conductors could offer exciting opportunities for diffusion-limited on-chip bio-microfluidic sensors. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Micro/Nano-Chip Electrokinetics, Volume II)
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Open AccessArticle Influences of Excitation on Dynamic Characteristics of Piezoelectric Micro-Jets
Micromachines 2017, 8(7), 213; doi:10.3390/mi8070213
Received: 8 May 2017 / Revised: 14 June 2017 / Accepted: 30 June 2017 / Published: 5 July 2017
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Abstract
Piezoelectric micro-jets are based on piezoelectric ink-jet technology and can achieve the drop-on demand requirements. A piezoelectric micro-jet which is designed for bearing lubrication is presented in this paper. In order to analyze the fluid dynamic characteristics of the piezoelectric micro-jet so as
[...] Read more.
Piezoelectric micro-jets are based on piezoelectric ink-jet technology and can achieve the drop-on demand requirements. A piezoelectric micro-jet which is designed for bearing lubrication is presented in this paper. In order to analyze the fluid dynamic characteristics of the piezoelectric micro-jet so as to obtain good injection performance, a direct coupling simulation method is proposed in this paper. The effects of inlet and viscous losses in the cavity are taken into account, which are close to the actual conditions in the direct coupling method. The effects of the pulse excitation parameters on the pinch-off time, tail length, velocity, and volume of the droplet are analyzed by the proposed direct coupling method. The pressure distribution inside the cavity of the micro-jet and the status of the droplet formation at different times are also given. In addition, the method is proved to be effective in predicting and analyzing the fluid dynamic characteristics of piezoelectric micro-jets by comparing the simulation results with the experimental results. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Piezoelectric MEMS)
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Open AccessArticle Designing a Tool System for Lowering Friction during the Ejection of In-Die Sintered Micro Gears
Micromachines 2017, 8(7), 214; doi:10.3390/mi8070214
Received: 29 May 2017 / Revised: 30 June 2017 / Accepted: 3 July 2017 / Published: 6 July 2017
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Abstract
The continuous improvements in micro-forging technologies generally involve process, material, and tool design. The field assisted sintering technique (FAST) is a process that makes possible the manufacture of near-net-shape components in a closed-die setup. However, the final part quality is affected by the
[...] Read more.
The continuous improvements in micro-forging technologies generally involve process, material, and tool design. The field assisted sintering technique (FAST) is a process that makes possible the manufacture of near-net-shape components in a closed-die setup. However, the final part quality is affected by the influence of friction during the ejection phase, caused by radial expansion of the compacted and sintered powder. This paper presents the development of a pre-stressed tool system for the manufacture of micro gears made of aluminum. By using the hot isostatic pressing (HIP) sintering process and different combinations of process parameters, the designed tool system was compared to a similar tool system designed without a pre-stressing strategy. The comparison between the two tool systems was based on the ejection force and part fidelity. The ejection force was measured during the tests, while the part fidelity was documented using an optical microscope and computed tomography in order to obtain a multi-scale characterization. The results showed that the use of pre-stress reduced the porosity in the gear by 40% and improved the dimensional fidelity by more than 75% compared to gears produced without pre-stress. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Micro/Nano Manufacturing)
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Open AccessArticle PZT-Actuated and -Sensed Resonant Micromirrors with Large Scan Angles Applying Mechanical Leverage Amplification for Biaxial Scanning
Micromachines 2017, 8(7), 215; doi:10.3390/mi8070215
Received: 9 April 2017 / Revised: 30 June 2017 / Accepted: 2 July 2017 / Published: 6 July 2017
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Abstract
This article presents design, fabrication and characterization of lead zirconate titanate (PZT)-actuated micromirrors, which enable extremely large scan angle of up to 106° and high frequency of 45 kHz simultaneously. Besides the high driving torque delivered by PZT actuators, mechanical leverage amplification has
[...] Read more.
This article presents design, fabrication and characterization of lead zirconate titanate (PZT)-actuated micromirrors, which enable extremely large scan angle of up to 106° and high frequency of 45 kHz simultaneously. Besides the high driving torque delivered by PZT actuators, mechanical leverage amplification has been applied for the micromirrors in this work to reach large displacements consuming low power. Additionally, fracture strength and failure behavior of poly-Si, which is the basic material of the micromirrors, have been studied to optimize the designs and prevent the device from breaking due to high mechanical stress. Since comparing to using biaxial micromirror, realization of biaxial scanning using two independent single-axial micromirrors shows considerable advantages, a setup combining two single-axial micromirrors for biaxial scanning and the results will also be presented in this work. Moreover, integrated piezoelectric position sensors are implemented within the micromirrors, based on which closed-loop control has been developed and studied. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue MEMS Mirrors)
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Open AccessArticle Development of the Electric Equivalent Model for the Cytoplasmic Microinjection of Small Adherent Cells
Micromachines 2017, 8(7), 216; doi:10.3390/mi8070216
Received: 2 May 2017 / Revised: 25 June 2017 / Accepted: 4 July 2017 / Published: 8 July 2017
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Abstract
A novel approach utilizing current feedback for the cytoplasmic microinjection of biological cells is proposed. In order to realize the cytoplasmic microinjection on small adherent cells (diameter < 30 μm and thickness < 10 μm), an electrical model is built and analyzed according
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A novel approach utilizing current feedback for the cytoplasmic microinjection of biological cells is proposed. In order to realize the cytoplasmic microinjection on small adherent cells (diameter < 30 μm and thickness < 10 μm), an electrical model is built and analyzed according to the electrochemical properties of target cells. In this study, we have verified the effectiveness of the current measurement for monitoring the injection process and the study of ion channel activities for verifying the cell viability of the cells after the microinjection. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Microdevices and Microsystems for Cell Manipulation)
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Open AccessArticle Effects of Environmental Gas and Trace Water on the Friction of DLC Sliding with Metals
Micromachines 2017, 8(7), 217; doi:10.3390/mi8070217
Received: 23 June 2017 / Accepted: 8 July 2017 / Published: 11 July 2017
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Abstract
This paper describes an experimental study on the friction of a-C:H diamond-like carbon (DLC) and ta-C DLC coatings in gas with different concentration of trace water. Pin-on-disk sliding experiments were conducted with DLC coated disks and aluminum pins in hydrogen, nitrogen, and argon.
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This paper describes an experimental study on the friction of a-C:H diamond-like carbon (DLC) and ta-C DLC coatings in gas with different concentration of trace water. Pin-on-disk sliding experiments were conducted with DLC coated disks and aluminum pins in hydrogen, nitrogen, and argon. Trace oxygen was eliminated to less than 0.1 ppm, while water in the gas was controlled between 0 and 160 ppm. Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy (FT-IR) and laser Raman spectroscopy were used to analyze the transfer films on the metal surfaces. It was found that trace water slightly increased friction in hydrogen gas, whereas trace water caused a significant decrease in the friction coefficient in nitrogen and argon, particularly with a-C:H DLC. The low friction in hydrogen was brought about by the formation of transfer films with structured amorphous carbon, but no differences in the structure and contents of the films were found in the tests with and without trace water. In nitrogen and argon, the low friction with a-C:H DLC was achieved by the gradual formation of transfer films containing structured amorphous carbon, and FT-IR spectra showed that the films contained CH, OH, C–O–C, and C–OH bonds. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Microtribology, Adhesion and Surface Engineering)
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Open AccessArticle Large-Area and High-Throughput PDMS Microfluidic Chip Fabrication Assisted by Vacuum Airbag Laminator
Micromachines 2017, 8(7), 218; doi:10.3390/mi8070218
Received: 15 May 2017 / Revised: 23 June 2017 / Accepted: 29 June 2017 / Published: 12 July 2017
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Abstract
One of the key fabrication steps of large-area microfluidic devices is the flexible-to-hard sheet alignment and pre-bonding. In this work, the vacuum airbag laminator (VAL) which is commonly used for liquid crystal display (LCD) production has been applied for large-area microfluidic device fabrication.
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One of the key fabrication steps of large-area microfluidic devices is the flexible-to-hard sheet alignment and pre-bonding. In this work, the vacuum airbag laminator (VAL) which is commonly used for liquid crystal display (LCD) production has been applied for large-area microfluidic device fabrication. A straightforward, efficient, and low-cost method has been achieved for 400 × 500 mm2 microfluidic device fabrication. VAL provides the advantages of precise alignment and lamination without bubbles. Thermal treatment has been applied to achieve strong PDMS–glass and PDMS–PDMS bonding with maximum breakup pressure of 739 kPa, which is comparable to interference-assisted thermal bonding method. The fabricated 152 × 152 mm2 microfluidic chip has been successfully applied for droplet generation and splitting. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Insights and Advancements in Microfluidics) Printed Edition available
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Open AccessFeature PaperArticle Nearly Aberration-Free Multiphoton Polymerization into Thick Photoresist Layers
Micromachines 2017, 8(7), 219; doi:10.3390/mi8070219
Received: 22 May 2017 / Revised: 21 June 2017 / Accepted: 6 July 2017 / Published: 13 July 2017
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Abstract
In the era of lab-on-chip (LOC) devices, two-photon polymerization (TPP) is gaining more and more interest due to its capability of producing micrometer-sized 3D structures. With TPP, one may integrate functional structures into microfluidic systems by polymerizing them directly inside microchannels. When the
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In the era of lab-on-chip (LOC) devices, two-photon polymerization (TPP) is gaining more and more interest due to its capability of producing micrometer-sized 3D structures. With TPP, one may integrate functional structures into microfluidic systems by polymerizing them directly inside microchannels. When the feature of sub-micrometer size is a requirement, it is necessary to use high numerical aperture (NA) oil-immersion objectives that are optimized to work close to the glass substrate-photoresist interface. Further away from the substrate, that is, a few tens of micrometers into the photoresist, the focused beam undergoes focal spot elongation and focal position shift. These effects may eventually reduce the quality of the polymerized structures; therefore, it is desirable to eliminate them. We introduce a method that can highly improve the quality of structures polymerized tens of micrometers away from the substrate-photoresist interface by an oil-immersion, high NA objective. A spatial light-modulator is used to pre-compensate the phase-front distortion introduced by the interfacial refractive index jump on the strongly converging beam. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Ultrafast Laser Fabrication for Lab-on-a-Chip)
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Open AccessArticle Analysis of the Dynamic Characteristics of a Micro-Piezoelectric Bimorph Beam Based on an Admittance Test
Micromachines 2017, 8(7), 220; doi:10.3390/mi8070220
Received: 31 May 2017 / Revised: 9 July 2017 / Accepted: 11 July 2017 / Published: 14 July 2017
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Abstract
A piezoelectric bimorph beam, as an upgraded cantilever beam structure, can be used to detect gas content and build a micro-actuator, among other functions. Thus, this beam is widely applied to microelectromechanical systems (MEMS), transformers, and precision machinery. For example, when photoacoustic spectroscopy
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A piezoelectric bimorph beam, as an upgraded cantilever beam structure, can be used to detect gas content and build a micro-actuator, among other functions. Thus, this beam is widely applied to microelectromechanical systems (MEMS), transformers, and precision machinery. For example, when photoacoustic spectroscopy is performed to detect oil-soluble gas in transformers, a micro-cantilever beam can be used to detect gas content. The dynamic characteristics of piezoelectric bimorph beams, such as resonant frequency, are important indexes in the applications of these beams. The equivalent circuit model for a piezoelectric bimorph beam is examined in this study and an admittance test is performed on the beam to accurately, quickly, and economically measure and analyze its dynamic characteristics. Then, the least squares method is applied to obtain the characteristic curves of the admittance circle, amplitude frequency, and phase frequency; identify the dynamic characteristics of the piezoelectric bimorph beam (e.g., resonant frequency); and determine the parameters of the equivalent circuit. The resonant frequency of the piezoelectric bimorph beam is 207.67 Hz based on the result of the admittance circle test, which is basically consistent with the results of microscope image method (i.e., 207.85 Hz) and the theoretical calculation (i.e., 222.03 Hz). This finding proves the validity of the proposed test method. This method cannot only improve the detection speed of piezoelectric bimorph beams, but can also provide a fast detection strategy for testing the characteristics of such beams during photoacoustic spectroscopy. Full article
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Open AccessArticle Tool Run-Out Measurement in Micro Milling
Micromachines 2017, 8(7), 221; doi:10.3390/mi8070221
Received: 29 May 2017 / Revised: 11 July 2017 / Accepted: 12 July 2017 / Published: 24 July 2017
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Abstract
The interest in micro manufacturing processes is increasing because of the need for components characterized by small dimensions and micro features. As a result, researchers are studying the limitations and advantages of these processes. This paper deals with tool run-out measurement in micro
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The interest in micro manufacturing processes is increasing because of the need for components characterized by small dimensions and micro features. As a result, researchers are studying the limitations and advantages of these processes. This paper deals with tool run-out measurement in micro milling. Among the effects of the scale reduction from macro to micro, tool run-out plays an important role, affecting cutting force, tool life, and the surface integrity of the produced part. The aim of this research is to develop an easy and reliable method to measure tool run-out in micro milling. This measuring strategy, from an Industry 4.0 perspective, can be integrated into an adaptive model for controlling cutting force, with the aim of improving the production quality and the process stability, while at the same time reducing tool wear and machining costs. The proposed procedure deduces tool run-out from the actual tool diameter, the channel width, and the cutting edge’s phase, which is estimated by analyzing the cutting force signal. In order to automate the cutting edge phase measurement, the suitability of two functions approximating the force signal was evaluated. The developed procedure was tested on data from experimental tests. A Ti6Al4V sample was machined using two coated micro end mill flutes made by SECO setting different run-out values. The results showed that the developed procedure can be used for tool run-out estimation. Full article
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Open AccessArticle An Inexpensive Paper-Based Aluminum-Air Battery
Micromachines 2017, 8(7), 222; doi:10.3390/mi8070222
Received: 23 May 2017 / Revised: 23 June 2017 / Accepted: 12 July 2017 / Published: 17 July 2017
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Abstract
Paper-based batteries are an alternative to traditional batteries due to their low cost, portability, and simplicity to operate. In the present work, we demonstrate an improved and inexpensive paper-based aluminum-air battery employing KOH as the electrolyte with sufficient energy to power small devices.
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Paper-based batteries are an alternative to traditional batteries due to their low cost, portability, and simplicity to operate. In the present work, we demonstrate an improved and inexpensive paper-based aluminum-air battery employing KOH as the electrolyte with sufficient energy to power small devices. The dimensions of the device, electrode size, and electrolyte concentration were optimized with respect to amperage and reproducibility. The maximum amperage of 17.4 mA and maximum power of 3.0 mW was achieved with a 9 cm2 battery with anode and cathode electrode areas of 5.1 cm2 and 3.75 cm2 respectively, using 1.5 M potassium hydroxide (KOH). In a series configuration, the batteries generate sufficient energy to power light-emitting diodes (LEDs), a flashlight, a glucometer, and a pregnancy test. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Paper Microfluidics: Fundamental Studies and Applications)
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Open AccessArticle Friction Reduction for a Rotational Gyroscope with Mechanical Support by Fabrication of a Biomimetic Superhydrophobic Surface on a Ball-Disk Shaped Rotor and the Application of a Water Film Bearing
Micromachines 2017, 8(7), 223; doi:10.3390/mi8070223
Received: 16 June 2017 / Revised: 13 July 2017 / Accepted: 14 July 2017 / Published: 17 July 2017
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Abstract
Friction between contacting surfaces of metal materials restricts the application of mechanical support in the high-precision inertial device of a rotational gyroscope. Instead, a disk- or ring-shaped rotor is electrostatically or magnetically suspended. However, stability of the rotor suspension restricts further improvement of
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Friction between contacting surfaces of metal materials restricts the application of mechanical support in the high-precision inertial device of a rotational gyroscope. Instead, a disk- or ring-shaped rotor is electrostatically or magnetically suspended. However, stability of the rotor suspension restricts further improvement of the measurement precision. In the developed rotational gyroscope, a stable mechanical rotor supporting scheme with low friction is achieved by fabrication of a superhydrophobic surface with similar nanostructures of the lotus leaf on the carbon steel ball of the ball-disk-shaped rotor and the addition of a water film between the rotor ball and bronze hemispherical supporting bowl, which forms a water film bearing. The special design of the ball-disk-shaped rotor makes it possible for the application of a low-friction water bearing in the gyroscope, with rotor tilting motion. With a superhydrophobic surface, friction is further decreased and the rated spinning speed increases 12.4%, resulting in approximately the same proportion of increase in the scale factor. Moreover, superhydrophobic surface reduces mechanical damping torque for precessional motion to one order smaller than electrostatic feedback torque. Thus, through close-loop control, stable damping characteristics for precessional motion are obtained. The gyroscope exhibits excellent performance with the parameters of the measurement range, scale factor, nonlinearity, resolution, bias stability, and dynamic setting time tested to be −30°/s to 30°/s, −0.0985 V/(°/s), 0.43%, 0.1°/s, 0.5°/h, 0.1 s, respectively. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Bio-Inspired Micro/Nano Devices and Systems)
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Open AccessArticle Investigation of Micro-Bending of Sheet Metal Laminates by Laser-Driven Soft Punch in Warm Conditions
Micromachines 2017, 8(7), 224; doi:10.3390/mi8070224
Received: 20 June 2017 / Revised: 20 June 2017 / Accepted: 14 July 2017 / Published: 18 July 2017
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Abstract
Microscale laser dynamic flexible forming (µLDFF) is a novel ultrahigh strain rate manufacturing technology with high efficiency and low cost. However, the µLDFF is just confined to single-layer foil at present. In this work, sheet metal laminates (Cu/Ni) were selected as the experimental
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Microscale laser dynamic flexible forming (µLDFF) is a novel ultrahigh strain rate manufacturing technology with high efficiency and low cost. However, the µLDFF is just confined to single-layer foil at present. In this work, sheet metal laminates (Cu/Ni) were selected as the experimental material for its excellent mechanical and functional properties, and a new micro-bending method of sheet metal laminates by laser-driven soft punch was proposed in warm conditions. The micro-mold and warm platform were designed to investigate the effects of temperature and energy on formability, which were characterized by forming accuracy, surface quality, element diffusion, and so on. The experimental results show that the forming accuracy and quality increased first and then decreased with laser energy, but the hardness increased consistently. In warm conditions, the fluidity of material was improved. The forming depth and accuracy increased for the relieved springback, and the surface quality increased first and then decreased. The tensile fracture disappeared with temperature for the decreased hardness and thinning ratio, and the element diffusion occurred. Overall, this study indicates that the formability can be improved in warm conditions and provides a basis for the investigation of micro-bending of sheet metal laminates by µLDFF in warm conditions. Full article
(This article belongs to the collection Laser Micromachining and Microfabrication)
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Open AccessArticle Map-Based Indoor Pedestrian Navigation Using an Auxiliary Particle Filter
Micromachines 2017, 8(7), 225; doi:10.3390/mi8070225
Received: 19 May 2017 / Revised: 14 July 2017 / Accepted: 15 July 2017 / Published: 19 July 2017
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Abstract
In this research, a non-infrastructure-based and low-cost indoor navigation method is proposed through the integration of smartphone built-in microelectromechanical systems (MEMS) sensors and indoor map information using an auxiliary particle filter (APF). A cascade structure Kalman particle filter algorithm is designed to reduce
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In this research, a non-infrastructure-based and low-cost indoor navigation method is proposed through the integration of smartphone built-in microelectromechanical systems (MEMS) sensors and indoor map information using an auxiliary particle filter (APF). A cascade structure Kalman particle filter algorithm is designed to reduce the computational burden and improve the estimation speed of the APF by decreasing its update frequency and the number of particles used in this research. In the lower filter (Kalman filter), zero velocity update and non-holonomic constraints are used to correct the error of the inertial navigation-derived solutions. The innovation of the design lies in the combination of upper filter (particle filter) map-matching and map-aiding methods to further constrain the navigation solutions. This proposed navigation method simplifies indoor positioning and makes it accessible to individual and group users, while guaranteeing the system’s accuracy. The availability and accuracy of the proposed algorithm are tested and validated through experiments in various practical scenarios. Full article
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Open AccessArticle Squeeze Film Air Damping in Tapping Mode Atomic Force Microscopy
Micromachines 2017, 8(7), 226; doi:10.3390/mi8070226
Received: 23 May 2017 / Revised: 3 July 2017 / Accepted: 17 July 2017 / Published: 20 July 2017
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Abstract
In dynamic plowing lithography, the sample surface is indented using a vibrating tip in tapping mode atomic force microscopy. During writing, the gap between the cantilever and the sample surface is very small, usually on the order of micrometers. High vibration frequency and
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In dynamic plowing lithography, the sample surface is indented using a vibrating tip in tapping mode atomic force microscopy. During writing, the gap between the cantilever and the sample surface is very small, usually on the order of micrometers. High vibration frequency and small distance induce squeeze film air damping from the air in the gap. This damping can cause variations in the cantilever’s vibrating parameters and affect the accuracy of the nanoscale patterning depth. In this paper, squeeze film air damping was modeled and analyzed considering the inclined angle between the cantilever and the sample surface, and its effects on the resonant amplitude and damping coefficient of the cantilever were discussed. The squeeze film air damping in the approaching curve of cantilever was observed, and its effect on fabricating nanopatterns was discussed. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue State-Of-The-Art Micromachining)
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Open AccessArticle Karman Vortex Creation Using Cylinder for Flutter Energy Harvester Device
Micromachines 2017, 8(7), 227; doi:10.3390/mi8070227
Received: 24 March 2017 / Revised: 10 June 2017 / Accepted: 12 June 2017 / Published: 21 July 2017
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Abstract
This study presents the creation of a Karman vortex for a fluttering electromagnetic energy harvester device using a cylinder. The effects of two parameters, which are the diameter and the position of the cylinder, were investigated on the Karman vortex profile and the
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This study presents the creation of a Karman vortex for a fluttering electromagnetic energy harvester device using a cylinder. The effects of two parameters, which are the diameter and the position of the cylinder, were investigated on the Karman vortex profile and the amplitude of the fluttering belt, respectively. A simulation was conducted to determine the effect of the creation of the Karman vortex, and an experiment was performed to identify influence of the position of the cylinder on the fluttering belt amplitude. The results demonstrated that vortex-induced vibration occurred at the frequency of the first natural mode for the belt at 3 cm and 10 cm for the diameter and position of the cylinder, respectively. Under such configuration, an electromagnetic energy harvester was attached and vibrated via the fluttering belt inside the turbulent boundary layers. This vibration provides a measured output voltage and can be used in wireless sensors. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue MEMS Energy Harvesters)
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Open AccessArticle Rapid Nucleic Acid Extraction and Purification Using a Miniature Ultrasonic Technique
Micromachines 2017, 8(7), 228; doi:10.3390/mi8070228
Received: 17 April 2017 / Revised: 11 July 2017 / Accepted: 18 July 2017 / Published: 21 July 2017
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Abstract
Miniature ultrasonic lysis for biological sample preparation is a promising technique for efficient and rapid extraction of nucleic acids and proteins from a wide variety of biological sources. Acoustic methods achieve rapid, unbiased, and efficacious disruption of cellular membranes while avoiding the use
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Miniature ultrasonic lysis for biological sample preparation is a promising technique for efficient and rapid extraction of nucleic acids and proteins from a wide variety of biological sources. Acoustic methods achieve rapid, unbiased, and efficacious disruption of cellular membranes while avoiding the use of harsh chemicals and enzymes, which interfere with detection assays. In this work, a miniature acoustic nucleic acid extraction system is presented. Using a miniature bulk acoustic wave (BAW) transducer array based on 36° Y-cut lithium niobate, acoustic waves were coupled into disposable laminate-based microfluidic cartridges. To verify the lysing effectiveness, the amount of liberated ATP and the cell viability were measured and compared to untreated samples. The relationship between input power, energy dose, flow-rate, and lysing efficiency were determined. DNA was purified on-chip using three approaches implemented in the cartridges: a silica-based sol-gel silica-bead filled microchannel, nucleic acid binding magnetic beads, and Nafion-coated electrodes. Using E. coli, the lysing dose defined as ATP released per joule was 2.2× greater, releasing 6.1× more ATP for the miniature BAW array compared to a bench-top acoustic lysis system. An electric field-based nucleic acid purification approach using Nafion films yielded an extraction efficiency of 69.2% in 10 min for 50 µL samples. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Application of Microfluidic Methodology for the Analysis of DNA)
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Open AccessReview Microfluidic and Nanofluidic Resistive Pulse Sensing: A Review
Micromachines 2017, 8(7), 204; doi:10.3390/mi8070204
Received: 17 April 2017 / Revised: 11 June 2017 / Accepted: 21 June 2017 / Published: 25 June 2017
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Abstract
The resistive pulse sensing (RPS) method based on the Coulter principle is a powerful method for particle counting and sizing in electrolyte solutions. With the advancement of micro- and nano-fabrication technologies, microfluidic and nanofluidic resistive pulse sensing technologies and devices have been developed.
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The resistive pulse sensing (RPS) method based on the Coulter principle is a powerful method for particle counting and sizing in electrolyte solutions. With the advancement of micro- and nano-fabrication technologies, microfluidic and nanofluidic resistive pulse sensing technologies and devices have been developed. Due to the unique advantages of microfluidics and nanofluidics, RPS sensors are enabled with more functions with greatly improved sensitivity and throughput and thus have wide applications in fields of biomedical research, clinical diagnosis, and so on. Firstly, this paper reviews some basic theories of particle sizing and counting. Emphasis is then given to the latest development of microfuidic and nanofluidic RPS technologies within the last 6 years, ranging from some new phenomena, methods of improving the sensitivity and throughput, and their applications, to some popular nanopore or nanochannel fabrication techniques. The future research directions and challenges on microfluidic and nanofluidic RPS are also outlined. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Insights and Advancements in Microfluidics) Printed Edition available
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Other

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Open AccessOpinion Electronic Devices That Identify Individuals with Fever in Crowded Places: A Prototype
Micromachines 2017, 8(7), 202; doi:10.3390/mi8070202
Received: 1 May 2017 / Revised: 14 June 2017 / Accepted: 16 June 2017 / Published: 24 June 2017
Cited by 1 | PDF Full-text (1994 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text | Supplementary Files
Abstract
Most epidemiological surveillance systems for severe infections with epidemic potential are based on accumulated symptomatic cases in defined geographical areas. Eventually, all cases have to be clinically verified to confirm an outbreak. These patients will present high fever at the early stages of
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Most epidemiological surveillance systems for severe infections with epidemic potential are based on accumulated symptomatic cases in defined geographical areas. Eventually, all cases have to be clinically verified to confirm an outbreak. These patients will present high fever at the early stages of the disease. Here, we introduce a non-invasive low-cost electronic device (bracelet) that measures and reports 24/7, year-round information on the temperature, geographical location, and identification of the subject using the device. The data receiver can be installed in a tower (ground) or a drone (air) in densely populated or remote areas. The prototype was made with low-cost electronic components, and it was tested indoors and outdoors. The prototype shows efficient ground and air connectivity. This electronic device will allow health professionals to monitor the prevalence of fever in a geographical area and to reduce the time span between the presentation of the first cases of a potential outbreak and their medical evaluation by giving an early warning. Field tests of the device, programs, and technical diagrams of the prototype are available as Supplementary Materials. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Medical Microdevices and Micromachines)
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