MEMS based rotary valve for fluidic handling system

Microfluidic systems are very often dedicated to one measurement and driven by a fixed fluidic setting. Creating a flexible fully reconfigurable fluidic handling system implies the introduction of bulky fluidic components to manipulate the fluids, creating larger systems with dead volume. The fully integrated fluidic rotary valve developed by LioniX International enables a fully flexible reconfigurable fluidic system.

Rotary valve

Rotary valves are commonly used in analytical techniques such as liquid chromatography and biosensing. The commercially available rotary valves are relatively big and expensive. Utilization of these valves increases the bulkiness of the system while the associated tubing may introduce a relatively large dead volume. In order to realize a far more compact system, a hybrid fabrication approach was followed for delivering an integrated MEMS based rotary valve, which in principle can replace a whole set of standard multiport rotary valves.

The MEMS based rotary valve consists of a liquid handling chip (stator) and a Teflon part (rotator). The liquid handling chip was made from Borofloat and fabricated by application of several photolithography steps in combination with processing steps such as wet etching, powderblasting, and gold layer deposition.

The microfabricated Teflon rotator part is designed to be mounted on top of the liquid handling chip (at an applied torque of about 0.5 Nm). The surface of the Teflon part is in intimate contact with the glass chip and contains slots that, depending on the position of the rotator, enable fluidic connection between specific fluidic outlets on the top side of the liquid handling chip. Furthermore, the microchannels have outlets at the bottom side for connection to the ‘outerworld’ tubing.

The rotary valve shows minimal leakage of <10mbar/min at 2500 mbar over pressure. The normal operating pressure is well below 100 mbar.

  • Fully reconfigurable
  • Automated fluidic handling
  • Low leakage
  • No carry over between consecutively used liquids
  • Rapid sample introduction
  • No plug dispersion due to low dead volume

Challenging the light

Besides the usual business of LioniX International, working with light at nanoscale, we are driving a larger ‘photonic’ road: the most important light source, the sun. We’re very proud to sponsor the Solar Team Twente. Since 2005 Dutch students take part in the Solar Challenge: a yearly event in Australia. This year Solar Team Twente participates with the Red Shift, a solar car filled with technological surprises.By creating the best solar car in the world, the students develop technologies and innovations for efficient use of solar energy as a power source for vehicles.We believe in this team and are convinced that they will be the champions of the Bridgestone World Solar Challenge, held from 8 – 15 October.

We wish them good luck!

Follow the Solar Team Twente.

LXI & HHI intensify collaboration of their PIC platforms

LioniX International (LXI) and Fraunhofer Heinrich Hertz Institute Berlin (HHI) will strengthen the collaboration of their Photonic Integrated Circuit (PIC) platforms by actively supporting the integration of both platforms together. Combining the functionalities of both platforms enables new applications varying from telecom, datacom to bio-photonics, sensing and metrology. Both platforms have their own unique properties which are complementary as was demonstrated in the realization of the world record ultra-low linewidth lasers (290 Hz linewidth).
Both HHI and LXI will actively supply engineering resources to support the combination of both platforms.
The PIC platform of LioniX International is based on stoichiometric silicon nitride realized by Low Pressure Chemical vapor deposition and is branded under the name TriPleX™. The platform is complementary to the Indium Phosphide (InP) platform of HHI as it is ultra low loss (from 405 to 2350 nm) and has the ability to create spot size converters enabling an optimized conversion between the mode profiles in for example HHI’s InP chips as well as many types of fibers.
“Our unique hybrid integration capabilities support our customers that demand fully assembled Photonic Integrated Circuit Modules”, says Hans van den Vlekkert, CEO of LXI. ”With HHI we have found a supplier that supports our vertical integrated approach to our photonic IC module manufacturing”.
The PIC platform of HHI relies on InP semiconductors, which offer a wide range of optical functionalities such as light sources, detection, amplification, and phase control in the wavelength region from 1200nm up to 1650nm. HHI´s portfolio of commercial products includes: high-speed photodiodes and balanced detectors, high-speed Mach-Zehnder- and other modulators, as well as a wide variety of laser products. In addition, HHI´s PIC platform for customer-specific PICs enhanced by LXI´s low-loss PICs allow for a large range of products targeting a wide range of applications.
“We are proud that LXI has selected HHI as a source for their outstanding products.“ says Martin Schell, Director of HHI. “Developing a standard interface between active and passive PICs allows for experience accumulation over many different designs and thus benefits hybrid integration and its industrial and academic users.”

LioniX International: LioniX International is a leading global provider of customized microsystem solutions, in particular integrated photonics-based, in scalable production volumes. LioniX International provides customized solutions for OEM’s and System Integrators, from design to fully assembled modules, by vertical integration in scalable production volumes. LioniX International maintains its technology leadership secured by a strong IP position. LioniX International focuses on Photonic Integrated Circuits (PIC) enabled modules based on its proprietary waveguide technology (TriPleX™), in addition to its other core competences micro-fluidics, opto-fluidics and MEMS. As a vertical integrated company LioniX International delivers a complete solution to its OEM customers: from initial design through volume manufacturing of products.

The Fraunhofer Heinrich-Hertz-Institute: Fraunhofer HHI does research on communications since nearly 90 years. Nowadays, about every second bit transported in the internet touches HHI InP technology on its way to the receiver. With a strong focus on InP, HHI also develops polymer waveguide based hybrid integration and silicon photonics. While the HHI expertise is strongest in high performance (100GBit/sec and above) data- and telecom, HHI has strongly increasing activities in sensor systems, e.g. based on terahertz technology. HHI regularly offers MPWs (multi-project wafer runs) in InP. HHI’s partners have the choice to do the design themselves and just use HHI as a foundry or to get both design and chips from a single source.

Record-low linewidth laser

Record-low linewidth demonstrated in the same hybrid integration technology as our ultra-narrow linewidth tunable laser:

The Laser Physics and Nonlinear Optics department at the University of Twente MESA+ research institute, Applied Nanophotonics, has demonstrated a record low linewidth of 290 Hz for a tunable laser. The laser is fabricated in the same photonic integration technology as LioniX Internationals hybrid integrated approach: combining InP gain chip with a TriPleX™ chip designed as tunable narrowband mirror.

This low linewidth finds use in many new applications in tele/datacom, life science and metrology, like 5G networks, optimized GPS systems, fiber based sensing systems and many more.

More information:

The whole press release by University of Twente.

Ultra-low linewidth tunable laser by LioniX International.

Improvements on our modulation technology

LioniX International offers several building blocks and technologies for the on-chip modulation of light, both in amplitude and phase.

Recent developments on our stress-based phase tuning technology are presented in a paper at CLEO/Europe: Ultra-low-power stress-based phase
actuator for microwave photonics.

The paper describes the demonstration on the first stress-optic phase actuator in a silicon nitride-based waveguide platform in the telecommunication C-band. And show the advances in optimizing our waveguide configuration to improve the stress-opticeffect from an actuating piezo-electric layer.

Interested in our modulation capabilities? Drop by our booth at Laser Munich or contact us.

Free Visible MPW participation

During the great event of Laser World of Photonics in Munich (26 – 29 June), LioniX International wants to offer something great: a free participation on our new Visible Light Multi Project Wafer offering. This offer is together with the EU H2020 pilot line project PIX4life.

If you have a great idea and want to try that in our waveguide technology or are just curious to see what integrated photonics can mean for your application, come to our booth and ask for the rules of the game! Shortly after the show it will be announced what was the best contribution and wins the free.

This contest has ended. If you’re still interesting, please contact us for more information.

Visible Arrayed Waveguide Grating for Spectrometer Applications

On the CLEO-Europe 2017 show in Munich LioniX International has presented its work on a photonic integrated spectrometer based on an arrayed waveguide grating for visible light. This work is part of the EU H2020 funded project called InSPECT, that is developping new spectrometer technologies for Spectral Tissue Sensing.

The spectrometer is based on the silicon nitride waveguide technology TriPleX™ that supports this AWG design to work in the complete range of interst of the project: between 400nm and 1700nm.

Photonic Integration Roadmap

Last week during the World Technology Mapping Forum, LioniX International together with many others from over the whole world, discussed the next generation technologies the world is going to need in 2030 and beyond. Photonics, and especially integrated photonics will drive many new applications in filed like tele and datacommunications, life sciences and metrology.

Have a look at the World Technology Mapping Forum website for more information about the progress.

Post-deadline paper on narrow linewidth tunable laser

CLEO US  has accepted our post deadline abstract for its conference from 14 – 19 May, San Jose, CA, USA. With Youwen Fan (University of Twente, MESA+ Institute for Nanotechnology)  as main author we’re proud that LioniX International co-authored this excellent work.

With its title “290 Hz intrinsic linewidth from an integrated optical chip-based widely tunable InP-Si3N4 hybrid laser” the work can be called revolutionary. The authors present an integrated chip-based InP-Si3N4 hybrid laser with unprecedented high spectral-purity. A record-narrow fundamental laser linewidth of 290 Hz with a widest-ever spectral coverage (81 nm at 1550 nm) is experimentally demonstrated.

 

If you are interested in this work, please contact us for an update about the narrow linewidth tunable laser developments.

Vacancies at LioniX International

Would you like to work in a successful and dynamic organization?

At this moment we have no vacancies at LioniX International.

For general information contact Joost van Kerkhof by sending an email.