|New Materials for Lab-On-a-Chip (LOC) Devices
There is an increasing demand for accurate and high performance integrated devices to speed up some multi-step chemical processes. A key segment has been the analysis of biological fluids (e.g. the identification of biological or chemical weapons) as well as other issues related to chemical analysis such as food safety and quality, diagnostics, environmental control, etc. Besides analytical chemistry, there are other areas where integrated devices are emerging as an alternative to traditional methods. This is the case in fine chemistry or dangerous product production that commonly requires an online analysis and control of the process. These micro-devices or small-integrated laboratories are better known as Lab-on-a-chip (LOC). This Newsletter looks at a variety of recent developments in this area with a focus on development of new materials for LOC systems beyond Silicon, Glass and a few polymers like PMMA. Historically, the choice of materials has restricted the possible range of applications.