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High Throughput Centrifugal Adhesion Screening Test for Soft Materials

submitted on 25.03.2021, 16:33 and posted on 26.03.2021, 10:30 by Yusu Chen, Qifeng Wang, Carolyn Mills, Johanna Kann, Kenneth Shull, Danielle Tullman-Ercek, Muzhou Wang

High-throughput screening of material mechanical properties has the potential to transform material science research in both aiding in material discovery and developing predictive models. However, the development of these assays is inherently difficult with only a few methods and tools reported, and the mounting demand for enormous material property datasets to develop predictive models is unfulfilled by the limited throughput of the current techniques. In particular, equipment cost and instrument limitations prohibit the widespread generation of large material property datasets. We address this problem by developing a high-throughput colorimetric method for testing mechanical adhesion using a common laboratory centrifuge, multi-well plates and microparticles. The technique uses centrifugation to apply a homogenous mechanical detachment force across the samples in the multi-well plate. We also develop a high-throughput sample deposition method to prepare films with uniform thickness in each well, minimizing well-to-well variability in measurements. Our centrifugal adhesion testing method can differentiate polymer films with variate adhesion strengths and shows excellent agreement with the probe tack adhesion test. To illustrate the throughput and consistency of the overall process, we displayed a pattern on a multi-well plate by depositing two different formulations and performing the centrifugal test. We can achieve a throughput of thousands of samples per run, and it is limited only by the number of wells in the plates. With its simplicity, low cost and large dynamic range, this high-throughput method has the potential to change the landscape of adhesive material characterization.


MRSEC: Center for Multifunctional Materials

Directorate for Mathematical & Physical Sciences

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Northwestern University



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Declaration of Conflict of Interest

The authors declare no conflict of interest