3DμF - Interactive design environment for continuous flow microfluidic devices
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Citation (published version)Radhakrishna Sanka, Joshua Lippai, Dinithi Samarasekera, Sarah Nemsick, Douglas Densmore. 2019. "3DμF - IInteractive design environment for continuous flow microfluidic devices." Sci Rep, Volume 9, Issue 1, pp. 9166. https://doi.org/10.1038/s41598-019-45623-z
The design of microfluidic Lab on a Chip (LoC) systems is an onerous task requiring specialized skills in fluid dynamics, mechanical design drafting, and manufacturing. Engineers face significant challenges during the labor-intensive process of designing microfluidic devices, with very few specialized tools that help automate the process. Typical design iterations require the engineer to research the architecture, manually draft the device layout, optimize for manufacturing processes, and manually calculate and program the valve sequences that operate the microfluidic device. The problem compounds when engineers not only have to test the functionality of the chip but are also expected to optimize them for the robust execution of biological assays. In this paper, we present an interactive tool for designing continuous flow microfluidic devices. 3DμF is the first completely open source interactive microfluidic system designer that readily supports state of the art design automation algorithms. Through various case studies, we show 3DμF can be used to reproduce designs from literature, provide metrics for evaluating microfluidic design complexity and showcase how 3DμF is a platform for integrating a wide assortment of engineering techniques used in the design of microfluidic devices as a part of the standard design workflow.