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Microfluidic channel fabrication method

United States Patent

April 3, 2001
View the Complete Patent at the US Patent & Trademark Office
Sandia National Laboratories - Visit the Intellectual Property Management and Licensing Website
A new channel structure for microfluidic systems and process for fabricating this structure. In contrast to the conventional practice of fabricating fluid channels as trenches or grooves in a substrate, fluid channels are fabricated as thin walled raised structures on a substrate. Microfluidic devices produced in accordance with the invention are a hybrid assembly generally consisting of three layers: 1) a substrate that can or cannot be an electrical insulator; 2) a middle layer, that is an electrically conducting material and preferably silicon, forms the channel walls whose height defines the channel height, joined to and extending from the substrate; and 3) a top layer, joined to the top of the channels, that forms a cover for the channels. The channels can be defined by photolithographic techniques and are produced by etching away the material around the channel walls.
Arnold; Don W. (Livermore, CA), Schoeniger; Joseph S. (Oakland, CA), Cardinale; Gregory F. (Oakland, CA)
Sandia Corporation (Livermore, CA)
09/ 404,945
September 23, 1999
STATEMENT OF GOVERNMENT INTEREST This invention was made with Government support under contract no. DE-AC04-94AL85000 awarded by the U.S. Department of Energy to Sandia Corporation. The Government has certain rights in the invention.