Having combed through previous Boston University iGEM projects and talking to team members of Terra (Boston University iGEM Hardware Team 2018), our team was very impressed and appreciative of the meaningful information and guidance we received. It was because of this that we were dedicated from our initial design process to document our work in a manner that created ease of understanding and use for future iGEM teams. Not only did we document our work through various iterations of our CAD models but we also commented our software code for future teams to pick up where we left off (this will be uploaded on CIDAR Labs github following the Grand Jamboree). Lastly, we also wrote protocols for essential machinery like our inlab 3D printer for future iGEM members to have an easier transition into the research setting. All code utilized will be available on the CIDAR website after the Jamboree for future iGEM teams to iterate on.
Fluigent Pressure Pump Initialization:
Our project was very well set up for the use of Fluigent Pressure Pumps. Being the key method in controlling the flow rates used through our sensitive microfluidic chips, it was important we understood exactly what settings we were changing while using them. Also due to the expensive costs of the pumps, we were certain to get proper training before using them ourselves. Lastly, it was because of our countless hours talking to Fluigent company specialists in efforts to get our pumps working for our needs that we documented the set up for these pumps. The documentation below provides a thorough breakdown of the pump set up. It also includes helpful information on setting up the pumps with raspberry pi.
3D printer protocol:
Used to print our own t-junctions as well as parts for our hardware system, our team spent a fair amount of time working with our Creality CR20 Series printer. While it wasn’t a challenging feat to get the printer working, we found over the course of our project that certain settings worked best for certain needs. It was because of this we documented setting up the printer and other key settings below:
Fabricating Microfluidic Chips:
While fabricating microfluidic chips isn’t a very time intensive process, it does require proper training. The documentation below outlines the fabrication process from using our CNC desktop machine to make the chips themselves to cleaning the channels of our chip with isopropanol.