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Introducing Microfluidics Through A Problem Based Laboratory Course

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Conference

2008 Annual Conference & Exposition

Location

Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania

Publication Date

June 22, 2008

Start Date

June 22, 2008

End Date

June 25, 2008

ISSN

2153-5965

Conference Session

NSF Grantees Poster Session

Page Count

7

Page Numbers

13.803.1 - 13.803.7

Permanent URL

https://peer.asee.org/3822

Download Count

124

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Paper Authors

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Ian Papautsky University of Cincinnati

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Dr. Ian Papautsky earned his Ph.D. in bioengineering from the University of Utah in 1999. He is currently a tenured Associate Professor of in the Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering at the University of Cincinnati. His research and teaching interests include application of microfluidics and nanotechnology to biology and medicine.

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Cathy Maltbie University of Cincinnati

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Dr. Catherine Maltbie earned her B.S. in Chemical Engineering and Ed.D. in Educational Studies (cognitive and social aspects of instruction). She is a Research Associate at the Evaluation Services Center, CECH, UC. Dr. Maltbie has a combination of educational and industry experience and coordinates projects related to K-16 STEM education and teaches research methods courses.

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David Eddington University of Illinois at Chicago

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Dr. Eddington earned his Ph.D. in Biomedical Engineering from the University of Wisconsin-Madison. He did a postdoctoral fellowship in Tissue Engineering at MIT as an awardee of an NIH Ruth L. Kirschstein National Research Service Award (NRSA). From undergraduate research to present, Dr. Eddington has worked with microfluidic systems with diverse applications ranging from recreating the pathophysiology of sickle cell disease on a microfluidic chip to precise spatial and temporal delivery of neuromodulators in organotypic brain slice culture.

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Ali Asgar Bhagat University of Cincinnati

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Ali Asgar S. Bhagat earned his M.S. in electrical engineering from the University of Cincinnati in 2006, and is currently a Ph.D. candidate in the Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering. His research interests include microfluidics and MEMS devices for chemical and biological assays. He was the teaching assistant at UC for the microfluidics laboratory course discussed in this paper.

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Hugo Caicedo University of Illinois at Chicago

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Hugo Caicedo Angulo earned his B.S. in electrical engineering from the Univesidad del Valle,Cali-Colombia in 2005, and is currently a Ph.D. research and teaching assistant in the Department of Bioengineering at University of Illinois at Chicago. His research interests include microfluidic chip to precise spatial and temporal delivery of neuromodulators in organotypic brain slice culture and MEMS devices for biochemical assays. He was the teaching assistant at UIC for the microfluidics laboratory course discussed in this paper.

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Abstract
NOTE: The first page of text has been automatically extracted and included below in lieu of an abstract

Introducing Microfluidics through a Problem-Based Laboratory Course

Abstract

Microfluidics is a multidisciplinary field that deals with the behavior and precise control of microliter and nanoliter volumes of fluids. In the past decade, microfluidics has transformed many areas of engineering and applied sciences. Yet little has been done to transfer the microfluidics research to the undergraduate curricula. To address this need, University of Cincinnati is developing a new undergraduate laboratory course to introduce students to microfluidic device development. A unique aspect of the course is the focus on an extended problem-based learning example that underlines all course activities. Working in teams of three, students use multi-physics modeling software (CFD ACE+ from ESI-CFD Inc.) to design and simulate a microfluidic mixer. Students then use the University of Cincinnati’s state-of-the-art clean room facility to prototype the designed devices in polymer and characterize them using fluorescence microscopy. Employing teams of students working together to conduct laboratory assignments allows team members to learn from each other and takes maximal advantage of students teaching students. At the end of the term, in seminar-style presentations, each student group discusses their device design, and compares experimental results with simulations. Following two successful offerings at the University of Cincinnati, we are now offering the course at the University of Illinois at Chicago, with plans of disseminating the course to other Universities across the country.

Introduction

Microfluidics is a multidisciplinary field spanning physics, chemistry, engineering and biotechnology, that studies the behavior of fluids at the microscale and the design of systems to leverage such behavior. The behavior of fluids at the microscale differs from “macrofluidic” behavior in that factors such as surface tension, energy dissipation, and electrokinetics begin to dominate. Microfluidics investigates how these behaviors change, and how they can be exploited for new uses. Integrating microfluidics with sensors, actuators, or other electronics gives new functionalities [1,2,3]. More importantly, the new fluid manipulation principles have enabled manipulation and detection of nanoliter fluid samples.

To address the growing national need, we developed a laboratory course “Microfluidic Biochip Laboratory.” The course has been recently described in several publications and presentations [4,5,6]. Briefly, a unique aspect of the course is the focus on an extended problem-based learning example of a microfluidic mixer that underlines all course activities. Focusing the course on the microfluidic mixer example permitted us to discuss all aspects of the microfluidic design cycle; including theory, modeling, fabrication, device characterization, and applications which is ideal for this introduction to the field. Working in teams of 3 or 4, students used multi- physics modeling software CFD ACE+ (ESI-CFD Inc., Huntsville, AL) to design and simulate a microfluidic mixer. Students then used the University of Cincinnati’s state-of-the-art clean room

Papautsky, I., & Maltbie, C., & Eddington, D., & Bhagat, A. A., & Caicedo, H. (2008, June), Introducing Microfluidics Through A Problem Based Laboratory Course Paper presented at 2008 Annual Conference & Exposition, Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. https://peer.asee.org/3822

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