Rapid prototyping of single-layer microfluidic PDMS devices with abrupt depth variations under non-clean-room conditions by using laser ablation and UV-curable polymer

  • Zhibin YanEmail author
  • Xiaoyang Huang
  • Chun Yang
Research Paper


The growing demand for microfluidic analytical devices calls for fast, cost-effective and high-throughput fabrication methods. Here we report a low-cost rapid prototyping method for single-layer microfluidic PDMS devices with abrupt depth variations under non-clean-room conditions. Channel patterns with different user-designed depths ranging from micrometres to millimetres are engraved on a polymethylmethacrylate (PMMA) plate in one step based on a laser ablation approach. A UV-curable polymer, Norland Optical Adhesive (NOA) 81, is then used to replicate the channel patterns from the PMMA female mould and is finally used as the master for single-layer polydimethylsiloxane (PDMS) microfluidic devices. This rapid prototyping method can significantly facilitate the fast evaluation of proof of concept in microfluidic researches and small-scale mass production for commercialization applications.


Microfluidics Microfabrication Rapid prototyping Single-layer PDMS Laser ablation UV-curable polymer 



The work is supported by the Ministry of Education, Singapore, under Academic Research Fund (AcRF) Tier 1 Grant No. RG97/13 and RG80/15.

Supplementary material

10404_2017_1943_MOESM1_ESM.pdf (255 kb)
Supplementary material 1 (PDF 255 kb)

Supplementary material 2 (WMV 9012 kb)


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag GmbH Germany 2017

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.School of Mechanical and Aerospace EngineeringNanyang Technological UniversitySingaporeSingapore

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