Microfluidics is the most widely used technology for Lab on a Chip systems. Nanofluidics is a more recent technology with still much to explore. In our micro- and nanofluidics theme in BIOS we apply micro- and nanofluidics technologies in Lab on a Chip devices and for Lab on a Chip functionalities. Quite often, especially in the new field of nanofluidics, we encounter novel phenomena, leading to fundamental advances in the field.
Our present research is centered in several application areas. A. Diagnostics. To create ultrasensitive molecular diagnostics devices (for example for early cancer detection), we develop nanophotonic giga-arrays and integrate them in working devices. We also develop CRISPR-based DNA sensing in microfluidic devices. Novel microfluidic tools based on responsive polymers are being developed in our joint laboratory with SCNU in Guangzhou (prof. Lingling Shui). Nanopore sensing using 2D materials such as graphene is being explored in our joint laboratory with Northwestern Polytechnic University in Xi’an (prof. Yanbo Xie). B. Separation Enhanced microfluidic mixing for improved chromatography is developed in a shared PhD project with VUB in Brussels (prof. Wim de Malsche) in a project which has both large experimental and fundamental challenges. C. Catalysis. To prepare hierarchical nanoparticle assemblies for catalysis, a nanodroplet generator is manufactured and its behavior theoretically investigated.
- Nanodroplet generator (MCEC)
- Enhanced mass transfer in microfluidic devices (EVODIS)
- Diagnostics for early cancer detection (WEIJERHORST)
- Temperature-responsive polymers for microfluidics (SCNU)
- Functional nanopore devices (NPU)
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