Integrated optical sensors for disposable microfluidics

Conference Dates

May 7-10, 2017


Optical chemical sensors are established process monitoring tools in industry and research laboratories. Optical chemical sensors basically comprise of luminescent indicator dye based in a host polymer. They are easy to integrate, non-invasive, do not need any reference element and can be read-out contactless from outside. However, to fully exploit the potential in microfluidic or organ-on- chip devices, the sensors have to fulfil several demands including high brightness, capability to be applied as thin film, excellent photo-stability, cheap and accurate read-out systems, ease in use (simple calibration and drift free), simple mass production compatible preparation steps, compatibility with the chip materials, resistance towards γ-sterilisation and no toxicity. We present sensors for oxygen and pH fulfilling these demands. Our sensors can be excited with red-light and emit light in the near infra-red range (<700 nm). This suppresses background fluorescence and scattering from biological material. Sensor layers or spots are deposited with inkjet-based micro-dispensing or air-brush spraying with good adherence on glass or polymeric materials. A modified miniaturized phase-fluorimeter in a foot-print of a memory stick enables the read-out of sensor sizes below 100 micrometers. The sensor enable dynamic cell culturing and monitoring of cell metabolism in a microfluidic environment. We will give examples of oxygen sensors in a organ-on-chip model and pH sensors in cell cultures.

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