Multi-physics Simulational Analysis of a Novel PCR Micro-Device

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While microfluidic devices for PCR amplification have critical applications in biodefense, homeland security, forensics and diagnostics, their efficient simulation and design continue to be a challenge. An experiment-only trial-and-error approach can prove to be prohibitively expensive and time consuming, leading to long development cycles. High-fidelity simulation based design of microfluidic PCR reactors can lead to rapid technology development. Several modeling and simulation efforts have been proposed that focus on either the thermal-fluidic aspect or the reaction kinetics of PCR devices. In this paper, a multi-physics approach that couples fluid flow, heat transfer and PCR chemistry is used to analyze a novel microfluidic PCR device, developed by Thermal Gradient, Inc. The model not only evaluates the thermal-fluidic fields in the device, but also captures the biochemical response for different operational conditions. Critical design parameters and their effect on amplification factor are identified and discussed. In general, the present model and simulation methodology can be used for kinetics analysis and optimal design of PCR micro-reactors.

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Journal: TechConnect Briefs
Volume: 3, Technical Proceedings of the 2007 NSTI Nanotechnology Conference and Trade Show, Volume 3
Published: May 20, 2007
Pages: 456 - 459
Industry sector: Sensors, MEMS, Electronics
Topic: Micro & Bio Fluidics, Lab-on-Chip
ISBN: 1-4200-6184-4