Cyclic Olefin Copolymer (COC) Polymer Molding for LOC
Dong Sung Kim and Kwang W. Oh
from: Lab-on-a-Chip Technology (Vol. 1): Fabrication and Microfluidics (Edited by: Keith E. Herold and Avraham Rasooly). Caister Academic Press, U.K. (2009)
Cyclic olefin copolymer (COC) draws attention as a primary substrate material for the microfluidic lab on a chip (LOC) applications based on its various advantages with regards to physical and chemical properties. For the replication of small structures (especially less than 10 μm), hot embossing is preferable and provides the simple fabrication process compared to the injection molding technique. However, as far as productivity is concerned, an injection molding process is the most effective replication technique for the polymer based LOC which has microstructures with feature size greater than 10 μm. In this chapter, (i) the fabrication process of silicon and polydimethylsiloxane (PDMS) mold inserts and the hot embossing process, and (ii) the proper processing windows of the injection molding and thermal bonding processes of the COC microfluidic LOC are described and discussed in detail. For the injection molding of the COC LOC, the fabrication process of nickel mold inserts is introduced based on UV-photolithography and subsequent electroplating process. A mold base which enables us to utilize a number of fabricated mold inserts by simple replacement is described to develop various types of injection molded COC LOC. Materials required for the whole fabrication process of the COC microfluidic LOC are also provided. Finally, application examples of the molded COC LOC and the perspective on future trends of the COC polymer molding process are provided read more ...