3D-printed mini-hydrocyclones for primary harvesting of microalgae

mini hydrocyclone
Water flow through a mini hydrocyclone

Maira Syed, member of Microfluidics lab at the School for Mechanical Engineering and BioMASS lab, has been developing microfluidic devices to provide a continuous, low cost and less energy extensive alternative to the conventional dewatering and pre-concentration techniques.

The characteristics of these mini-cyclones were numerically investigated using computational fluid dynamics. To showcase its utility, high-throughput algae harvesting from the medium with low energy input is demonstrated for the marine microalgae Tetraselmis suecica. By moving away from production of planar microfluidic systems using conventional microfabrication techniques and embracing 3D printing technology for construction of discrete elements, we envision 3D-printed mini-cyclones can be part of a library of standardized active and passive microfluidic components, suitable for particle-liquid separation.

The full article can be found at Lab on a Chip: http://pubs.rsc.org/en/content/articlepdf/2017/lc/c7lc00294g  and was picked up in