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“Plant-inspired TransfOrigami microfluidics”, a paper in Science Advances

Professor Anderson Ho Cheung Shum, Associate Vice-President (Research and Innovation) and Professor of Department of Mechanical Engineering had worked on a research for the topic “Plant-inspired TransfOrigami microfluidics”. The research has been published by Science Advances on May 4, 2022.

Details of the publication:

Plant-inspired TransfOrigami microfluidics

Yi Pan, Zhenyu Yang, Chang Li, Sammer Ul Hassan and Ho Cheung Shum

Article in Science Advances, Vol 8, Issue 18, DOI: 10.1126/sciadv.abo1719


The healthy functioning of the plants’ vasculature depends on their ability to respond to environmental changes. In contrast, synthetic microfluidic systems have rarely demonstrated this environmental responsiveness. Plants respond to environmental stimuli through nastic movement, which inspires us to introduce transformable microfluidics: By embedding stimuli-responsive materials, the microfluidic device can respond to temperature, humidity, and light irradiance. Furthermore, by designing a foldable geometry, these responsive movements can follow the preset origami transformation. We term this device TransfOrigami microfluidics (TOM) to highlight the close connection between its transformation and the origami structure. TOM can be used as an environmentally adaptive photomicroreactor. It senses the environmental stimuli and feeds them back positively into photosynthetic conversion through morphological transformation. The principle behind this morphable microsystem can potentially be extended to applications that require responsiveness between the environment and the devices, such as dynamic artificial vascular networks and shape-adaptive flexible electronics.

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