Miscellaneous

Reliable Synthesis of Monodisperse Microparticles: Prevention of Oxygen Diffusion and Organic Solvents Using Conformal Polymeric Coating onto Poly(dimethylsiloxane) Micromold

Abstract

An effective polymeric thin film deposited by initiated chemical vapor deposition (iCVD) process was presented and its application as a barrier film on the PDMS micromold blocking the penetration of oxygen and organic solvents was investigated. With this barrier film, we were able to synthesize monodisperse polymeric particles of sizes down to 3 μm, which has been reported to be extremely challenging with bare PDMS micromold. The polymeric barrier film on the PDMS micromold enabled this successful synthesis of microparticles by effectively blocking the diffusion of oxygen, which is a well-known radical quencher in radical polymerization, through the PDMS micromold. Furthermore, the iCVD barrier film substantially decreased the penetration of various organic solvents such as acetone, tert-butanol, PDMS oil, and decane as well as organic substances including fluorescent molecules like rhodamine B and fluorescein isothiocyanate (FITC). Therefore, the polymeric barrier film coated on PDMS micromold via iCVD process will broaden the application of PDMS to microfluidic area for the synthesis of smaller microparticles with various organic substances.

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Reliable Synthesis of Monodisperse Microparticles: Prevention of Oxygen Diffusion and Organic Solvents Using Conformal Polymeric Coating onto Poly(dimethylsiloxane) Micromold

Interfacial Thermal Conductance of Transfer-Printed Metal Films

Abstract

The thermal conductance of transfer-printed interfaces is found to be surprisingly high, only a factor of 2–10 smaller than the thermal conductance of interfaces formed by physical vapor deposition. These results have practical importance for the thermal management of electronic devices assembled by transfer-printing and provide fundamental insights on the nature of solid-solid contacts between elastically stiff materials.

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Interfacial Thermal Conductance of Transfer-Printed Metal Films

Thermal Fracture of Oxidized Polydimethylsiloxane and its Implications in Soft Lithography

Abstract

During the fabrication of nanopost arrays for measuring cellular forces, we have observed surface cracks in the negative molds used to replicate the arrays from a silicon master. These cracks become more numerous and severe with each replication such that repeated castings lead to arrays with missing or broken posts. This loss in pattern fidelity from the silicon master undermines the spatial resolution of the nanopost arrays in measuring cellular forces. We hypothesized that these cracks are formed because of a mismatch in the coefficient of thermal expansion (CTE) of PDMS and its oxidized surface layer. To study the fracture of PDMS due to thermal effects, we treated circular test samples of PDMS with oxidizing plasma and then heated them to cause surface cracks. These cracks were found to be more abundant at 180 °C than at lower temperatures. Finite element analysis of a bilayer material with a CTE mismatch was used to validate that thermal stresses are sufficient to overcome the fracture toughness of oxidized PDMS when heated to a curing temperature for PDMS. As a consequence, we have ascertained that elevated temperatures are a significant detriment to the reproducibility of nanoscale features in PDMS during replica molding.

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Thermal Fracture of Oxidized Polydimethylsiloxane and its Implications in Soft Lithography

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