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Mechanical, Industrial and Systems Engineering


Microfluidic separation technology has garnered significant attention over the past decade where particles are being separated at a micro/nanoscale in a rapid, low-cost, and simple manner. Amongst a myriad of separation technologies that have emerged thus far, acoustic microfluidic separation techniques are extremely apt to applications involving biological samples attributed to various advantages, including high controllability, biocompatibility, and non-invasive, label-free features. With that being said, downsides such as low throughput and dependence on external equipment still impede successful commercialization from laboratory-based prototypes. Here, we present a comprehensive review of recent advances in acoustic microfluidic separation techniques, along with exemplary applications. Specifically, an inclusive overview of fundamental theory and background is presented, then two sets of mechanisms underlying acoustic separation, bulk acoustic wave and surface acoustic wave, are introduced and discussed. Upon these summaries, we present a variety of applications based on acoustic separation. The primary focus is given to those associated with biological samples such as blood cells, cancer cells, proteins, bacteria, viruses, and DNA/RNA. Finally, we highlight the benefits and challenges behind burgeoning developments in the field and discuss the future perspectives and an outlook towards robust, integrated, and commercialized devices based on acoustic microfluidic separation.

Creative Commons License

Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.