ADDITIVE MANUFACTURING TECHNOLOGIES FOR FLEXIBLE OPTICAL AND BIOMEDICAL SYSTEMS
Advances in additive manufacturing technologies enable the rapid, high-throughput generation of mechanically soft microelectromechanical devices with tailored designs for many applications spanning from optical to biomedical applications. These devices can be softly interfaced with biological tissues and mechanically fragile systems, which enables to open up a whole new range of applications. However, the scalable production of these devices faces a significant challenge due to the complexity of the microfabrication process and the intolerable thermal, chemical, and mechanical conditions of their flexible polymeric substrates. To overcome these limitations, I have developed a set of advanced additive manufacturing technologies enabling (1) mechanics-driven manufacturing of quasi-three-dimensional (quasi-3D) nanoarchitectures with arbitrary substrate materials and structures; (2) repetitive replication of quasi-3D nanoarchitectures for infrared (IR) bandpass filtering; (3) electrochemical reaction-driven delamination of thin-film electronics over wafer-scale; (4) rapid custom printing of soft poroelastic materials for biomedical applications.
First, I have developed a new mechanics-driven nanomanufacturing method enabling large-scale production of quasi-3D plasmonic nanoarchitectures that are capable of controlling light at nanoscale length. This method aims to eliminate the need for repetitive uses of conventional nanolithography techniques that are time- and cost-consuming. This approach is innovative and impactful because, unlike any of the conventional manufacturing methods, the entire process requires no chemical, thermal, and mechanical treatments, enabling a large extension of types of receiver substrate to nearly arbitrary materials and structures. Pilot deterministic assembly of quasi-3D plasmonic nanoarrays with imaging sensors yields the most important advances, leading to improvements in a broad range of imaging systems. Comprehensive experimental and computational studies were performed to understand the underlying mechanism of this new manufacturing technique and thereby provide a generalizable technical guideline to the manufacturing society. The constituent quasi-3D nanoarchitectures achieved by this manufacturing technology can broaden considerations further downscaled plasmonic metamaterials suggest directions for future research.
Second, I have developed mechanics-driven nanomanufacturing that provides the capability to repetitively replicate quasi-3D plasmonic nanoarchitectures even with the presence of an extremely brittle infrared-transparent spacer, such as SU-8, thereby manipulating IR light (e.g., selectively transmitting a portion of the IR spectrum while rejecting all other wavelengths). Comprehensive experimental and computational studies were performed to understand the underlying nanomanufacturing mechanism of quasi-3D plasmonic nanoarchitectures. The spectral features such as the shape of the transmission spectrum, peak transmission and full width at half maximum (FWHM), etc. were studied to demonstrate the bandpass filtering effect of the assembled quasi-3D plasmonic nanoarchitecture.
Third, I have developed an electrochemical reaction-driven transfer printing method enabling a one-step debonding of large-scale thin-film devices. Conventional transfer printing methods have critical limitations associated with an efficient and intact separation process for flexible 3D plasmonic nanoarchitectures or bio-integrated electronics at a large scale. The one-step electrochemical reaction-driven method provides rapid delamination of large-scale quasi-3D plasmonic nanoarchitectures or bio-integrated electronics within a few minutes without any physical contact, enabling transfer onto the target substrate without any defects and damages. This manufacturing technology enables the rapid construction of quasi-3D plasmonic nanoarchitectures and bio-integrated electronics at a large scale, providing a new generation of numerous state-of-art optical and electronic systems.
Lastly, I have developed a new printing method enabling the direct ink writing (DIW) of multidimensional functional materials in an arbitrary shape and size to rapidly prototype stretchable biosensors with tailored designs to meet the requirement of adapting the geometric nonlinearity of a specific biological site in the human body. Herein, we report a new class of a poroelastic silicone composite that is exceptionally soft and insensitive to mechanical strain without generating significant hysteresis, which yields a robust integration with living tissues, thereby enabling both a high-fidelity recording of spatiotemporal electrophysiological activity and real-time ultrasound imaging for visual feedback. Comprehensive in vitro, ex vivo, and in vivo studies provide not only to understand the structure-property-performance relationships of the biosensor but also to evaluate infarct features in a murine acute myocardial infarction model. These features show a potential clinical utility in the simultaneous intraoperative recording and imaging on the epicardial surface, which may guide a definitive surgical treatment.
- Doctor of Technology
- Mechanical Engineering
- West Lafayette