Master of Science in Mechanical Engineering (MSME)


Mechanical Engineering

Document Type



This thesis presents a novel design for a passive alignment feature for vertically stacking chips in a micro fluidic device. Each chip is the size of a standard microscopic slide (75mm—25mm) and is a highly specialized functional unit designed and fabricated to process fluidic samples. The fluidic samples in the device flows from one chip to another using inter connecting holes 500μm-100μm in diameter. Hence an alignment of better than 100μm between chips is necessary to allow for the interconnecting holes to overlap so as to provide with a path for the fluid to flow. The feature to be used for alignment consists of v-grooves and dowel pins. Five v-grooves are hot embossed to each longer side walls of the chip such that the groove runs along the thickness of the chip. The dowel pins are fixed to a base and equal the number of v-groves. An elastic fit in between the groove and the pin provide the necessary alignment. A mathematical model has been developed and is used to predict the alignment of the method. The results from the model have been further verified experimentally.



Document Availability at the Time of Submission

Release the entire work immediately for access worldwide.

Committee Chair

Kevin W. Kelly