in collaboration with the UK's National Centre for Atmospheric Science, has
successfully tested the miniaturisation of gas chromatography equipment for
environmental testing. The glass Gas Chromatography Chip has a 300 µm
thick layer and is fabricated with isotropic channels, which effectively replace
the capillary and spindle structure which is characteristic of standard GC columns.
This microfluidic miniaturisation enables the production of portable, robust
and low power GC systems suitable for environmental applications such as atmospheric
The chip design includes an injection zone, which allows activated carbon particles
to be loaded and held, forming a sample absorption column. Closely packed within
a 100 x 100 mm microfluidic chip, the 7.5 m and 1.4 m long channels have an
internal diameter of 320 µm to ensure efficient heat transfer. With a
circular cross section, a uniform coating can be evenly applied to the inside
surface of the channel, effectively mimicking the stationary phase, to aid separation.
The results have been published in Journal of Chromatography A.
Professor Alastair Lewis, of the National Centre for Atmospheric Science at
the University of York, commented, "We are very pleased with the progress
of our development and the excellent support we have received from Dolomite,
which helped us to make significant progress. Our research has shown that microfluidics
is an enabling technology for the next generation of environmental testing equipment.
It provides in-situ environmental monitoring capabilities with the possibility
of a more rapid response to adverse changes in air quality."
For further information on the complete range of microfluidic products available
from Dolomite, including chips, connectors/interconnects, pumps, valves and
flow sensors, please visit www.dolomite-microfluidics.com.
Dolomite is a global leader in the design and manufacture of microfluidics
devices. With offices in the UK, US and Japan and distributors throughout the
rest of the world, its clients range from universities developing leading-edge
analytical equipment, to manufacturers of chemical, life sciences and clinical
Excellent microfabrication facilities that include cleanrooms, precision glass
processing facilities and applications laboratories were established with £2m
in funding from the UK Department of Trade and Industry's Micro and Nano Technology
(MNT) Manufacturing Initiative. Dolomite’s expertise includes top quality
engineering and scientific staff with strong backgrounds across the broad range
of disciplines required for success in bringing microfluidics applications to
the market, including chemistry, biotechnology, control system development,
electronics, physics and instrument design and supply.