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Microfluidic Assembly System

Assemble and laminate >30,000 microfluidic subassemblies per month with an accuracy of +/- 50 microns


High-speed automated assembly system for microfluidic subassembliesThis automated system was designed to assemble two microfluidic subassemblies used to create a six-layer diagnostic medium for the medical industry. The machine produces in excess of 30,000 completed assemblies per month at a rate of 9 seconds per lamination using six key subsystems, including a label applicator, laminating nest, laminating roller, input & output cassettes, pick & place, and reject handling.

To begin, an operator loads an input cassette with a stack of material (Items 1/2) and the label applicator with a roll of laminated components (Items 3/4). The system will continuously pick the material (Items 1/2) from the cassette and place it into a custom nest where it is precisely positioned. Then material (Items 3/4) is retrieved from the roll feed and accurately placed into the nest over the 1/2 material. The bottom of the nest is designed as a vacuum chuck to hold the material in place during roll lamination. A second pick and place will lift the combined subassembly (1/2/3/4) and place it into the output conveyor where precise pressure is applied. Following the batch processing of these first subassemblies, a second roll of laminated material (Items 5/6) is loaded and the subassemblies are then fed through the system again and assembled with the new roll of laminates.

Control System: Top level state machine based on software written in C#.NET
Motion Control: Galil servo controller with PC interface via high speed Gigabit Ethernet PCP/IP interface
Operator Station:

Custom GUI via ergo-mounted touch screen monitor, keyboard and mouse

Accuracy: +/- .002" (50.8 microns)
Throughput: 33,400 assemblies per month, 9 seconds per lamination
Roll Feed: AccuPlace Model RM3065 Adhesive Component Dispense System
Material Handling: Two pneumatically actuated, 2-axis pick and place, 72" long conveyor to accumulate completed subassemblies

High-speed automated assembly system for microfluidic subassemblies