New generations of resealable and multifunctions microfluidic chips
The main goal is to realize the first step of the nanoxerography protocol (contact between the colloidal dispersion and the charged substrate) not anymore by simple immersion in the colloidal bath but via the automatized injection of the dispersion inside a microfluidic chip. The development of a specific microfluidic chip had to be performed in order to smartly combined the advantages of both classical organic and inorganic materials employed in microfluidics, that is to say : a resealable microfluidic chip which could be opened or closed within seconds, chemically resistant, transparent, with high aspect ratio channels up to 1600. The obtained microfluidic chip, composed of a combination between two epoxy materials, already allowed to refine the control and the understanding of the nanoxerography assembly mechanisms: a limitation of the volume of colloidal dispersion used, a control of the rinsing and drying parameters and most of all an in-situ observations of the assembly and associated kinetics. It is worth noting that the interest of this type of multifunction microfluidic chip turns out to be overcome the simple nanoxerography application and consequently has led to a patent filed funded by TTT, the Midi Pyrénnées SATT.