ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202009.0451.v1
Subject: Materials Science, Polymers & Plastics Keywords: adherence; adhesion; surface tackiness; PDMS; characterization; organo sheet
Online: 19 September 2020 (08:28:08 CEST)
Damage and fibre misalignment of woven fabrics during discontinuous polymer processing remain challenging. To overcome these, a promising switchable elastomeric adherence gripper is introduced here. The inherent surface tackiness is utilized for picking and placing large sheets. Due to the elastomer’s viscoelastic material behavior, the surface properties depend on loading speed and temperature. Different peeling speeds result in different adherence strength of an interface between the gripper and the substrate. This feature is mechanically characterized and the viscoelastic behavior of the stamp is examined. Based on this experimental characterization, an empirical model is proposed. Furthermore, a discussion of the applicability and limitation of the elastomeric gripper is given.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints201806.0371.v1
Subject: Physical Sciences, Applied Physics Keywords: optical tweezers; optical trap; PDMS devices; single cells
Online: 25 June 2018 (06:10:34 CEST)
Optical tweezers offer a non-contact method for selecting single cells and translocating them from one microenvironment to another. We have characterized the optical tweezing of yeast S. cerevisiae and can manipulate single cells at velocities up to 0.77 mm/s using laser powers of 40 mW from a 785 nm diode laser. We have fabricated and tested three cell isolation devices; a micropipette, a PDMS chip and laser machined fused silica chip and we have isolated single bacteria, yeast and cyanobacteria cells. The most effective isolation was achieved in PDMS chip, where single yeast cells were grown and observed for 18 hours without contamination. The duration of budding in S. cerevisiae was not affected by the laser parameters used, but the time from tweezing until the first budding event began increased with increase laser energy (laser power x time). Cells tweezed using 25 mW for 1 minute were viable after isolation. We have constructed a micro-consortium of yeast cells, and a co-culture of yeast and bacteria, using optical tweezers in combination with the PDMS network of channels and isolation chambers, which may impact on both industrial biotechnology and understanding pathogen dynamics.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202203.0307.v1
Subject: Engineering, Biomedical & Chemical Engineering Keywords: Optimisation; Surface Modification; Contact Angle; PDMS; Stainless-Steel; Borosilicate Glass
Online: 23 March 2022 (04:25:16 CET)
Particle deposition on the surface of the drying chamber poses the main drawback in the spray drying process, which reduces the product recovery and affects the quality of the product. In view of this, the potential application of chemical surface modification to produce a hydrophobic surface that reduces the powder adhesion (biofouling) on the wall of the drying chamber was investigated in this study. The hydrophobic Polydimethylsiloxane (PDMS) solution was used in the vertical dipping method at room temperature to determine the optimum coating parameters on borosilicate glass and stainless-steel substrates, which were used to mimick the wall surface of the drying chamber, to achieve highly hydrophobic surfaces. A single-factor experiment was used to define the range of the PDMS concentration and treatment duration using the Response Surface Methodology (RSM). The Central Composite Rotatable Design (CCRD) was used to study the effects of the concentration of the PDMS solution (X1, %) and the treatment duration (X2, hr) on the contact angle of the substrate (°), which reflected the hydrophobicity of the surface. A three-dimensional (3D) response surface was constructed to examine the influence of the PDMS concentration and treatment duration on the contact angle readings, which serve as an indicator of the surface's hydrophobic characteristic. Based on the optimisation study, the PDMS coating for the borosilicate glass achieved an optimum contact angle of 99.33° through the combination PDMS concentration: X1 = 1% (w/v) and treatment time X2 = 4.94 hr, while the PDMS coating for the stainless-steel substrate achieved an optimum contact angle of 98.31° with PDMS concentration: X1 = 1% (w/v) and treatment time X2 = 1 hr. Additionally, the infrared spectra identified several new peaks that appeared on the PDMS-treated surfaces, which represented the presence of Si-O-Si, Si-CH3, CH2, and CH3 functional groups for the substrates coated with PDMS. Furthermore, the surface morphology analysis using the Field Emission Scanning Electron Microscopy (FESEM) showed the presence of significant roughness and uniform nanostructure on the surface of PDMS-treated substrates, which indicated the reduction of wettability and the potential effect on unwanted biofouling on the spray drying chamber.
Subject: Materials Science, Polymers & Plastics Keywords: hyperelastic material modelling; material parameter determination; TPU,; PDMS; damper structures
Online: 16 September 2021 (14:52:10 CEST)
Dampers provide safety by control of unwanted motion, due to conversion of mechanical work into another form of energy (e.g., heat). State of the art materials are elastomers including thermoplastic-elastomers. For polymer-appropriate replacement of multi-component shock absorbers comprising mounts, rods, hydraulic fluids, pneumatic devices, or electro-magnetic devices, among others, deep insights of the dynamic thermo-mechanical characteristics of damper materials have to be gained. The ultimate objective is to reduce complexity by utilizing inherent material damping rather than structural (multi-component) damping properties. The objective of this work was to compare the damping behavior of different elastomeric materials including thermoplastic poly(urethane) (TPU), and silicone rubber blends (mixtures of different poly(dimethylsiloxane) (PDMS)). Therefore, the materials were hyper- and viscoelastic characterized, a finite element calculation of a ball-drop test was performed, and for validation the rebound resilience was measured experimentally. In an attempt, the coil-over shock absorber of a model car was replaced by a damper made of the examined and modeled materials. The results revealed that the material parameter determination methodology is reliable, and the data applied for simulation lead to realistic predictions. Interestingly, the rebound resilience of the mixture of soft and hard PDMS (50:50)w% is the highest and the lowest values were measured for TPU.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202012.0630.v1
Subject: Physical Sciences, Optics Keywords: Microfabrication; polymeric microchip; laser ablation; PDMS devices; low-cost fabrication tool.
Online: 24 December 2020 (14:06:22 CET)
In this letter, we show an alternative low-cost fabrication method to obtain poly(dimethyl siloxane) (PDMS) microfluidic devices. The proposed method allows the inscription of micron resolution channels on polystyrene (PS) surfaces, used as a mold for the wanted microchip’s production, by applying a high absorption coating film on the PS surface to ablate it with a focused low-power visible laser. The method allows obtaining micro resolution channels at powers between 2 and 10mW and can realize any two-dimensional polymeric devices. The effect of the main processing parameters on the channel’s geometry is presented.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints201811.0456.v1
Subject: Biology, Plant Sciences Keywords: brachypodium; neutral red; root; casparian bands; PEG-6000; osmotic stress; real time imaging; PDMS
Online: 19 November 2018 (11:05:36 CET)
To elucidate dynamic developmental processes in plants, live tissues and organs have to be visualized frequently and for long time periods. The development of roots is studied in depth at a cellular resolution not only to comprehend the basic processes fundamental to maintenance and pattern formation but also study stress tolerance adaptation in plants. Despite technological advancements, maintaining continuous access to samples and simultaneously preserving their morphological structures and physiological conditions without causing damage presents hindrances in the measurement, visualization and analyses of growing organs including plant roots. We propose a preliminary system which integrates the optical real-time visualization through light microscopy with a liquid culture which enables us to image at the tissue and cellular level horizontally growing Brachypodium roots every few minutes and up to 24 hours. We describe a simple setup which can be used to track the growth of the root as it grows including the root tip growth and osmotic stress dynamics. We demonstrate the system’s capability to scale down the PEG-mediated osmotic stress analysis and collected data on gene expression under osmotic stress.
REVIEW | doi:10.20944/preprints202206.0309.v1
Subject: Life Sciences, Biophysics Keywords: lab-on-a-chip; cell migration; microfluidics; PDMS; hydrogels; femtosecond laser microfabrication; two-photon polymerization
Online: 22 June 2022 (08:21:44 CEST)
Understanding cell migration is a key step to unravel many physiological phenomena and predict several pathologies, like cancer metastasis. In particular, mechanical confinement has been proved to be a key factor in the cellular migration strategy choice. As our insight in the field improves, new tools are needed in order to empower biologists’ analysis capabilities. In this framework, microfluidic devices have been used to engineer the mechanical stimuli and to investigate cellular migration response in a more controlled way. In this work, we will review the existing technologies employed in the realization of microfluidic cellular migration assays, namely soft lithography of PDMS and hydrogels and femtosecond laser micromachining. We will give an overview of the state of the art of these devices, focusing on the different geometrical configurations that have been exploited to study specific aspects of cellular migration. Our scope is to highlight the advantages and possibilities given by each approach and to envisage the future developments in in-vitro migration studies under mechanical confinement in microfluidic devices.