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My research started with the micro injection moulding of miniature micro parts and the replication of single-micron and submicron features on the polymer surface. After PhD, I began to think about the future direction of these features. Microfluidic is my first target area. I spend a lot of time establishing the microfabrication process chains with the development of our customized key fabrication system, including a precision electroforming system and a precision chip bonding system. After many years' development, my team eventually establish a polymer micro fabrication platform with innovation in key enabling technologies in micro injection moulding for precision replication surface features, precision electroforming for fabrication of nickel micro moulds, precision bonding and surface treatment technologies for integration of plastic microfluidic chips, and micro additive manufacturing of polymeric micro surface using Digital Light Processing. 

Once establish this manufacturing platform, my vision is to develop useful technologies by using microfluidics as a platform. My team has developed a nanoparticle flow synthesis platform and a digital-LAMP rapid diagnostic platform for accelerating genetic drug development and for fast & direct quantification of viral load. We have also explored developing large-area functional micro/
nano structures
for anti-Covid and anti-microbial surfaces for a better and safe world. Our dream is to develop really useful technologies to benefit patients, and eventually bring a real positive impact to our world.  

Meanwhile, I am thinking about the future of manufacturing and healthcare. It is time to explore the atomic world and extend our fabrication scale down to the atomic scale. We are on the way. . . 


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Polymer micro/nano manufacturing 

Micro/nano manufacturing using polymer materials has a broad application in diagnostic devices, medical products, micro-optics and photonic devices. The major mass production technology of polymer micro/nano manufacturing would include micro/nano moulding/forming technologies and micro/nano scale additive manufacturing. 


Our group focuses the effort on the following area:

  • Precision electroforming of nickel moulds with micro structures 

  • Multi-scale tooling of bulk metallic glasses 

  • Micro injection moulding 

  • Nanoimprinting 

  • Digital light processing for precision 3D printing

Manufacturing plastic microfluidic chips

My team focused on plastic microfluidic chip prototyping and scaling up for many years. We have established the full process chain from chip design, UV lithography, PDMS casting, bonding and testing to plastic chip prototyping including mould making, injection moulding, bonding and surface treatment and validation. 


Our research is focusing on developing key enabling technologies:

  • High-performance self-lubricating nickel mould

  • Shaping and rounding of micro structured nickel mould

  • High precision 3D printing of micro moulds using DLP

  • Variother assisted micro injection moulding 

  • Numerical simulation of replication of micro features

  • Surface functionalization of PMMA and COC of microfluidics

  • High precision bonding of plastic microfluidic chip 

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Microfluidic platform for synthesis nanoparticles and molecular diagnostics

Drug development and point-of-care diagnostics are two major application areas of microfluidics. Based on our team's manufacturing platform, we have developed two platform technologies for the synthesis of nanoparticles for nanomedicine and digital LAMP/PCR for direct quantification of viral load. 


This would include:


  • Microfluidic chip design 

  • Instrumentation 

  • Drug synthesis

  • Digitalization 

  • Workflow and assay development

  • Scale up production using micro injection moulding 

  • Collaborative development for novel therapies and diagnostic assays

ACSM: atomic & close to atomic scale manufacturing

Human beings have witnessed unprecedented developments since the 1760s using precision tools and manufacturing methods that have led to ever-increasing precision, from millimetres to micrometers, to single nanometers, and atomic levels. The manufacturing modes have also advanced from craft-based manufacturing in the Stone, Bronze, and Iron Ages to precision-controllable manufacturing using automatic machinery.

Our team is starting to work on 2D materials ACSM by focusing on mechanistic study of materials' atomic fabrication and exploration of their potential application in electronics and healthcare.  

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