S&M Young Researcher Paper Award 2020
Recipients: Ding Jiao, Zao Ni, Jiachou Wang, and Xinxin Li [Winner's comments]
Paper: High Fill Factor Array of Piezoelectric Micromachined
Ultrasonic Transducers with Large Quality Factor

S&M Young Researcher Paper Award 2021
Award Criteria
Notice of retraction
Vol. 32, No. 8(2), S&M2292

Print: ISSN 0914-4935
Online: ISSN 2435-0869
Sensors and Materials
is an international peer-reviewed open access journal to provide a forum for researchers working in multidisciplinary fields of sensing technology.
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High–Thick Thermal Reflow Process Using Vacuum-Assisted Micromolding for Submillimeter Microvalves

Takaaki Abe, Shunya Okamoto, and Yoshiaki Ukita

(Received April 5, 2021; Accepted July 29, 2021)

Keywords: microfluidics, nano/microengineering, reflow process, microvalves

We report a reflow process for forming rounded channels of submillimeter height. In this method, a hot-melt glue comprising primarily of an ethylene–vinyl acetate copolymer is patterned onto a substrate via vacuum-assisted micromolding in capillaries using polydimethylsiloxane (PDMS) molds. This method enables a submillimeter channel structure to be fabricated using a thermoplastic resin. Subsequently, by heating the mold, rounded cross-sectional channels with a height of 100 µm order can be fabricated, which is difficult to achieve in the conventional reflow process using positive resists. By observing the cross-sectional shape of the reflowed mold, it is confirmed that the cross-sectional shape of the channels can be controlled via the heating time. In addition, the method offers flexibility in terms of the channel layout. As an application to microfluidic devices, we fabricate and evaluate a microperistaltic pump comprising three microvalves using a typical hot plate and a small vacuum pump. In addition, the PDMS mold and fabricated glue mold can be used repeatedly. In general, the proposed process is a simple and inexpensive means of fabricating micropumps and valves that can handle large objects such as cell tissues.

Corresponding author: Yoshiaki Ukita

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