Fluidics & microfluidics
Understanding and controlling the flow of gases and liquids is essential to the development and performance of many products.
We have an in-depth understanding of fluid mechanics coupled with practical knowledge of fluid handling technologies such as pumps, valves, pipetting, flowmeters and manifolds. We work across sectors with turbulent flows of 100’sL/min and in laminar flows with less than 1µL/min found in some diagnostic devices.
Insight modelling & simulation
We have the tools to perform Computational Fluid Dynamics (CFD) analysis, however this is not where we begin our work. We start from an understanding of the physics of the fluid flow and look to form models based on analytical solutions and well established empirical equations. This enables us to understand the contribution of many different parameters and rapidly explore many design options. This understanding then also helps us validate any subsequent CFD models.
Many of the devices we design have to handle small volumes of fluid in order to achieve the necessary sensitivity, minimise valuable reagents and enable low cost disposables. In these small systems the effects of surface tension and surface wetting become important. Here our combined teams of physicists, material scientists and chemists are able to optimise the device and the reagents as a system.
Multiphysics & engineering
The fluidics are usually only one element of a larger system. Often the fluidics involve optics, heating and cooling or sound propagation. We are able to combine these aspects in our modelling and the devices we design. We validate our designs by early proof of principle testing and include the practical and commercial constraints of what components are available and their real world performance.
Diagnostic platforms require accurate dispensing combined with low cost consumables and hardware. Here, we have undertaken projects including designing robotic systems based on pipetting technologies and pumps for precision liquid metering. We have also developed processing systems for highly viscous emulsions for the pharmaceutical industry. In the consumer sector we also advise on the dispensing of creams, detergents and formulations.
We have 15 years’ experience developing metering technologies for gases and fluids including electromagnetic and ultrasonic technologies. The majority of these developments have shared the common driving needs of low energy consumption and low-cost production.