Tuesday, October 25, 2016

Light-driven micro-tool equipped with a syringe function

Mark Jayson Villangca, Darwin Palima, Andrew Rafael Bañas and Jesper Glückstad

Leveraging developments in microfabrication open new possibilities for optical manipulation. With the structural design freedom from three-dimensional printing capabilities of two-photon polymerization, we are starting to see the emergence of cleverly shaped ‘light robots’ or optically actuated micro-tools that closely resemble their macroscopic counterparts in function and sometimes even in form. In this work, we have fabricated a new type of light robot that is capable of loading and unloading cargo using photothermally induced convection currents within the body of the tool. We have demonstrated this using silica and polystyrene beads as cargo. The flow speeds of the cargo during loading and unloading are significantly larger than when using optical forces alone. This new type of light robot presents a mode of material transport that may have a significant impact on targeted drug delivery and nanofluidics injection.

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