A microfluidic device for forming and/or dispensing minute volume segments of a material is described. In accordance with one aspect of the present invention, a microfluidic device and method is provided for spatially confining the material in a focusing element. The device is also capable of segmenting the confined material into minute volume segments, and dispensing a volume segment to a waste or collection channel. The device further includes means for driving the respective streams of sample and focusing fluids through respective channels into a chamber, such that the focusing fluid streams spatially confine the sample material. The device may also include additional means for driving a minute volume segment of the spatially confined sample material into a collection channel in fluid communication with the waste reservoir.
GOVERNMENT RIGHTS STATEMENT
The U.S. Government has a paid-up license in this invention and the right in limited circumstances to require the patent owner to license others on reasonable terms as provided for by the terms of contract No. DE-AC05-00OR22725 awarded by the U.S. Department of Energy.