system precision on chip
PDMS and thermoplastics
Modern medical biology requires µFabrication: in-vitro diagnostics, point-of-care, lab-on-a-chip, 3D cell culture. We produce microstructures on 4 inches (lateral> 20 µm) and choose the right material (PDMS, PTFE, thermoplastics) and the right coating for the task at hand.
Pumps, cameras, software
What is a chip good for if it cannot be used? We create our peripherals ourselves with 3D printing and laser cutting, control precision- and low-budget pumps (<10 €), implement camera systems and evaluate the data automatically using suitable open-source algorithms.
Cells and Biocompatibility
What sets us apart from other prototyping institutes is our strong expertise in biology. We can carry out tests with blood and cell lines in our S2 laboratory; tissue directly from the clinic is also possible. We can examine biocompatibility using several cell lines or HET-CAM.
Mission & Vision
The spoc labs see themselves as interpreters between physicians, biologists and technologists. Microfluidics is a very interdisciplinary and complex matter. While medical professionals like to focus purely on the measurement results, the translation from laboratory to industrial prototypes has its own difficulties. The interface between the worlds are the specifications, but they can only be set up meaningfully if you actually understand both sides sufficiently. We want to be this bridge and thus accelerate and facilitate development for everyone.
In our experience, most products fail not because of the manufacturing process itself, but because of other factors. Perhaps the product is ingenious, but too disruptive for the conservative clinic? Or the specifications are not clearly set because physicians and manufacturers expect the partner to fill in the missing positions sensibly?
For companies, we offer two experts from the laboratory to take time for you and discuss the idea openly. We have a close relationship with partners in the clinic, research and manufacturing. Together we can record the state-of-the-art and draw up the specifications. We can also refine them further through on-site tests, thus increasing the chance of the project being successful. The rule is: the earlier the manufacturing partner is involved, the better. Therefore, after the workshop, we will use established design rules to further substantiate the specifications and propose a list of partners. As a university laboratory, we are financially independent and neutral in our decision-making. At the end of the workshop, the report and a concrete proposal for the next steps will follow after 7 days at the latest. These next steps are gladly addressed together in a separate contract, be it as an interpreter between the application and the manufacturing or as a place of exchange for a “visiting engineer”.
Our workshop can typically be charged as a cooperation in funding projects. For SMEs within Austria, we recommend the FFG’s innovation check, which is easy to apply and offers an 80% funding rate.
Duration: 2 days (+ post-processing for report)
Where: Together on site in the laboratory
Cost: 10,000 EUR (net)
Three goals: To establish and refine specifications. Planning of concrete next steps. Suggestions for manufacturing or application partners.
Visiting Engineers & Scientists
We are happy to welcome scientists to our laboratory! Be it to implement your ideas using microfabrication or to put the application through its paces in the S2 laboratory. Based on our experience, problems with supposedly simple processes such as PDMS molding and bonding can be avoided and design errors can be discovered at an early stage.
We also welcome engineers from companies who would like to further refine the specifications after the workshop. Within a framework contract and after training, we offer the use of the devices and an exchange with the scientists on site. We look forward to supporting you with your product idea!
Would you like to implement a prototyping laboratory yourself (company, institute, academy)? You wonder what are the pitfalls of performing a HET-CAM for biocompatibility tests?
If you have specific questions, we are happy to carry out a 1-3 day training session to relieve you of the starting difficulties.
Costs: 5,000 – 10,000 € (net; depending on prior knowledge and goal)
Univ. Prof. Dr. Günter Lepperdinger
Hellbrunnerstrasse 34, 5020 Salzburg
Tel.: +43 (0) 662 / 8044-5739
Fax: +43 (0) 662 / 8044-5995