Team:Yale/Our Project/Applications


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iGEM Yale

Applications: Micro - Circuits, Structures, and Robots!

We have identified two areas where our deposition method can make progress:
1. Manufacturing
2. Design

The robotics case study shows how coverage of both of these areas can lead to assembly of micro-sized robots.

Engineering Design Applications
Nano/Micro scale circuits have been instrumental development of new concepts and technologies like the lab-in-a-chip. The wire deposition technique invented by the Yale team can be used to fabricate such circuits by depositing copper wire a substrate in a controlled fashion: [[Image:Example.jpg]]

First, a mould can be created on a silicon/silicon dioxide substrate using conventional techniques like photolithography or etching. The mould cane then be inundated with copper sulphate solution containing the engineered bacteria. The liquid withdraws out of the channels as the copper is deposited. The final product is a copper wire etched on a a substrate that can be processed further to work as a circuit. The case study illustrate how such wires can used to make a micro-sized thermocouple temperature sensor.

A similar approach can be used to make micro metallic structures. Complex moulds can be made using conventional manipulation techniques and deposited with metal. This approach allows for some degree of mass production as the same mould can be used to fabricate multiple parts unlike other common methods. For instance the commonly used Atomic Force Microscopy probe that ac pull, push, and indent surfaces to assemble nano/micro structures, does not allow to visualize the object and manipulate it at the same time, so requires a series of ‘look and move’ operations that make manipulation cumbersome.

A mould based system can simplify/eliminate the need for such manipulation by constraining deposition to the space inundated by the growth solution. This approach also allows for formation of complex geometries. However, this strategy requires efficient mould-part separation techniques (expand).
Applications Case Study: Microbots