Special Issue "Selected Papers from the 10th Symposium on Micro-Nano Science and Technology on Micromachines"

A special issue of Micromachines (ISSN 2072-666X).

Deadline for manuscript submissions: closed (30 May 2020).

Special Issue Editors

Prof. Dr. Koji Miyazaki
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Guest Editor
Department of Mechanical and Control Engineering, Kyushu Institute of Technology, 1-1 Sensui-cho,Tobata-ku, Kitakyushu,Fukuoka,804-8550 Japan
Interests: thermophysical properties; thermoelectrics
Special Issues and Collections in MDPI journals
Prof. Dr. Takahiro Namazu
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Guest Editor
Department of Mechanical and Electronic Systems Engineering, Faculty of Engineering, Kyoto University of Advanced Science, 18 Gotanda-cho, Yamanouchi, Ukyo-ku, Kyoto 615-8577, Japan
Interests: nanomechanics; functional materials; material testing
Special Issues and Collections in MDPI journals
Dr. Yuya Morimoto
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Assistant Guest Editor
Department of Mechano-Informatics, Graduate School of Information Science and Technology, the University of Tokyo, 7-3-1 Hongo, Bunkyo-ku, Tokyo, 113-8656, Japan
Interests: biofabrication; biohybrid robotics; microfluidics

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

This Special Issue will publish selected papers from the 10th Symposium on Micro-Nano Science and Technology on Micromachines, 19–21 November 2019, in Hamamatsu, Japan.

We encourage contributions on significant and original works in order to understand physical, chemical, and biological phenomena at the micro/nano scales and to develop applied technologies. The conference will cover the following main topics:

1: Precision machinery lubrication design;
2: Material dynamics strength;
3: Hydrodynamics;
4: Thermal engineering;
5: Production processing mechanical materials;
6: Robotics mechatronics;
7: Medical biotechnology;
8: Micro/nano system.

Papers attracting most interest at the conference, or that provide novel contributions, will be selected for publication in Micromachines. These papers will be peer-reviewed for validation of research results, developments, and applications.

Prof. Dr. Koji Miyazaki
Prof. Dr. Takahiro Namazu
Dr. Yuya Morimoto
Guest Editors

Manuscript Submission Information

Manuscripts should be submitted online at www.mdpi.com by registering and logging in to this website. Once you are registered, click here to go to the submission form. Manuscripts can be submitted until the deadline. All papers will be peer-reviewed. Accepted papers will be published continuously in the journal (as soon as accepted) and will be listed together on the special issue website. Research articles, review articles as well as short communications are invited. For planned papers, a title and short abstract (about 100 words) can be sent to the Editorial Office for announcement on this website.

Submitted manuscripts should not have been published previously, nor be under consideration for publication elsewhere (except conference proceedings papers). All manuscripts are thoroughly refereed through a single-blind peer-review process. A guide for authors and other relevant information for submission of manuscripts is available on the Instructions for Authors page. Micromachines is an international peer-reviewed open access monthly journal published by MDPI.

Please visit the Instructions for Authors page before submitting a manuscript. The Article Processing Charge (APC) for publication in this open access journal is 1600 CHF (Swiss Francs). Submitted papers should be well formatted and use good English. Authors may use MDPI's English editing service prior to publication or during author revisions.

Keywords

  • Micro/nanofabrication
  • Micro/nanofluidics
  • Micro/nanothermal engineering
  • MEMS technology
  • Robotics
  • Lab-on-a-chip

Published Papers (8 papers)

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Research

Open AccessArticle
Effect of Geometric Curvature on Collective Cell Migration in Tortuous Microchannel Devices
Micromachines 2020, 11(7), 659; https://doi.org/10.3390/mi11070659 - 02 Jul 2020
Abstract
Collective cell migration is an essential phenomenon in many naturally occurring pathophysiological processes, as well as in tissue engineering applications. Cells in tissues and organs are known to sense chemical and mechanical signals from the microenvironment and collectively respond to these signals. For [...] Read more.
Collective cell migration is an essential phenomenon in many naturally occurring pathophysiological processes, as well as in tissue engineering applications. Cells in tissues and organs are known to sense chemical and mechanical signals from the microenvironment and collectively respond to these signals. For the last few decades, the effects of chemical signals such as growth factors and therapeutic agents on collective cell behaviors in the context of tissue engineering have been extensively studied, whereas those of the mechanical cues have only recently been investigated. The mechanical signals can be presented to the constituent cells in different forms, including topography, substrate stiffness, and geometrical constraint. With the recent advancement in microfabrication technology, researchers have gained the ability to manipulate the geometrical constraints by creating 3D structures to mimic the tissue microenvironment. In this study, we simulate the pore curvature as presented to the cells within 3D-engineered tissue-scaffolds by developing a device that features tortuous microchannels with geometric variations. We show that both cells at the front and rear respond to the varying radii of curvature and channel amplitude by altering the collective migratory behavior, including cell velocity, morphology, and turning angle. These findings provide insights into adaptive migration modes of collective cells to better understand the underlying mechanism of cell migration for optimization of the engineered tissue-scaffold design. Full article
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Open AccessArticle
A Preliminary Prototype High-Speed Feedback Control of an Artificial Cochlear Sensory Epithelium Mimicking Function of Outer Hair Cells
Micromachines 2020, 11(7), 644; https://doi.org/10.3390/mi11070644 - 29 Jun 2020
Abstract
A novel feedback control technique for the local oscillation amplitude in an artificial cochlear sensory epithelium that mimics the functions of the outer hair cells in the cochlea is successfully developed and can be implemented with a control time on the order of [...] Read more.
A novel feedback control technique for the local oscillation amplitude in an artificial cochlear sensory epithelium that mimics the functions of the outer hair cells in the cochlea is successfully developed and can be implemented with a control time on the order of hundreds of milliseconds. The prototype artificial cochlear sensory epithelium was improved from that developed in our previous study to enable the instantaneous determination of the local resonance position based on the electrical output from a bimorph piezoelectric membrane. The device contains local patterned electrodes deposited with micro electro mechanical system (MEMS) technology that is used to detect the electrical output and oscillate the device by applying local electrical stimuli. The main feature of the present feedback control system is the principle that the resonance position is recognized by simultaneously measuring the local electrical outputs of all of the electrodes and comparing their magnitudes, which drastically reduces the feedback control time. In this way, it takes 0.8 s to control the local oscillation of the device, representing the speed of control with the order of one hundred times relative to that in the previous study using the mechanical automatic stage to scan the oscillation amplitude at each electrode. Furthermore, the intrinsic difficulties in the experiment such as the electrical measurement against the electromagnetic noise, adhesion of materials, and fatigue failure mechanism of the oscillation system are also shown and discussed in detail based on the many scientific aspects. The basic knowledge of the MEMS fabrication and the experimental measurement would provide useful suggestions for future research. The proposed preliminary prototype high-speed feedback control can aid in the future development of fully implantable cochlear implants with a wider dynamic range. Full article
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Open AccessArticle
Au Nanospirals Transferred onto PDMS Film Exhibiting Circular Dichroism at Visible Wavelengths
Micromachines 2020, 11(7), 641; https://doi.org/10.3390/mi11070641 - 29 Jun 2020
Abstract
We propose a thin, single-layered circular dichroic filter with Au nanospiral structures on a polydimethylsiloxane (PDMS) thin film that has strong circular dichroism at visible wavelengths. Au nanospiral structures with a diameter of 70 nm were fabricated by cryogenic glancing angle deposition on [...] Read more.
We propose a thin, single-layered circular dichroic filter with Au nanospiral structures on a polydimethylsiloxane (PDMS) thin film that has strong circular dichroism at visible wavelengths. Au nanospiral structures with a diameter of 70 nm were fabricated by cryogenic glancing angle deposition on a substrate with a nanodot array template patterned with the block copolymer PS-PDMS. The Au nanospiral structures were transferred onto a transparent and flexible PDMS thin film to fabricate a thin, single-layered circular dichroic filter. The filter had a very large circular dichroism peak of −830 mdeg at 630 nm. The results show that the Au nanospiral structures transferred onto PDMS thin film exhibit large circular dichroism at visible wavelengths. Full article
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Open AccessArticle
Design and Characterization of an EEG-Hat for Reliable EEG Measurements
Micromachines 2020, 11(7), 635; https://doi.org/10.3390/mi11070635 - 28 Jun 2020
Abstract
In this study, a new hat-type electroencephalogram (EEG) device with candle-like microneedle electrodes (CMEs), called an EEG-Hat, was designed and fabricated. CMEs are dry EEG electrodes that can measure high-quality EEG signals without skin treatment or conductive gels. One of the challenges in [...] Read more.
In this study, a new hat-type electroencephalogram (EEG) device with candle-like microneedle electrodes (CMEs), called an EEG-Hat, was designed and fabricated. CMEs are dry EEG electrodes that can measure high-quality EEG signals without skin treatment or conductive gels. One of the challenges in the measurement of high-quality EEG signals is the fixation of electrodes to the skin, i.e., the design of a good EEG headset. The CMEs were able to achieve good contact with the scalp for heads of different sizes and shapes, and the EEG-Hat has a shutter mechanism to separate the hair and ensure good contact between the CMEs and the scalp. Simultaneous measurement of EEG signals from five measurement points on the scalp was successfully conducted after a simple and brief setup process. The EEG-Hat is expected to contribute to the advancement of EEG research. Full article
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Open AccessArticle
Capturing Human Perceptual and Cognitive Activities via Event-Related Potentials Measured with Candle-Like Dry Microneedle Electrodes
Micromachines 2020, 11(6), 556; https://doi.org/10.3390/mi11060556 - 30 May 2020
Abstract
We demonstrate capture of event-related potentials (ERPs) using candle-like dry microneedle electrodes (CMEs). CMEs can record an electroencephalogram (EEG) even from hairy areas without any skin preparation, unlike conventional wet electrodes. In our previous research, we experimentally verified that CMEs can measure the [...] Read more.
We demonstrate capture of event-related potentials (ERPs) using candle-like dry microneedle electrodes (CMEs). CMEs can record an electroencephalogram (EEG) even from hairy areas without any skin preparation, unlike conventional wet electrodes. In our previous research, we experimentally verified that CMEs can measure the spontaneous potential of EEG from the hairy occipital region without preparation with a signal-to-noise ratio as good as that of the conventional wet electrodes which require skin preparation. However, these results were based on frequency-based signals, which are relatively robust compared to noise contamination, and whether CMEs are sufficiently sensitive to capture finer signals remained unclear. Here, we first experimentally verified that CMEs can extract ERPs as good as conventional wet electrodes without preparation. In the auditory oddball tasks using pure tones, P300, which represent ERPs, was extracted with a signal-to-noise ratio as good as that of conventional wet electrodes. CMEs successfully captured perceptual activities. Then, we attempted to investigate cerebral cognitive activity using ERPs. In processing the vowel and prosody in auditory stimuli such as /itta/, /itte/, and /itta?/, laterality was observed that originated from the locations responsible for the process in near-infrared spectroscopy (NIRS) and magnetoencephalography experiments. We simultaneously measured ERPs with CMEs and NIRS in the oddball tasks using the three words. Laterality appeared in NIRS for six of 10 participants, although laterality was not clearly shown in the results, suggesting that EEGs have a limitation of poor spatial resolution. On the other hand, successful capturing of MMN and P300 using CMEs that do not require skin preparation may be readily applicable for real-time applications of human perceptual activities. Full article
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Open AccessArticle
A Microfluidic Diagnostic Device Capable of Autonomous Sample Mixing and Dispensing for the Simultaneous Genetic Detection of Multiple Plant Viruses
Micromachines 2020, 11(6), 540; https://doi.org/10.3390/mi11060540 - 26 May 2020
Cited by 1
Abstract
As an efficient approach to risk management in agriculture, the elimination of losses due to plant diseases and insect pests is one of the most important and urgent technological challenges for improving the crop yield. Therefore, we have developed a polydimethylsiloxane (PDMS)-based microfluidic [...] Read more.
As an efficient approach to risk management in agriculture, the elimination of losses due to plant diseases and insect pests is one of the most important and urgent technological challenges for improving the crop yield. Therefore, we have developed a polydimethylsiloxane (PDMS)-based microfluidic device for the multiplex genetic diagnosis of plant diseases and pests. It offers unique features, such as rapid detection, portability, simplicity, and the low-cost genetic diagnosis of a wide variety of plant viruses. In this study, to realize such a diagnostic device, we developed a method for the autonomous dispensing of fluid into a microchamber array, which was integrated with a set of three passive stop valves with different burst pressures (referred to as phaseguides) to facilitate precise fluid handling. Additionally, we estimated the mixing efficiencies of several types of passive mixers (referred to as chaotic mixers), which were integrated into a microchannel, through experimental and computational analyses. We first demonstrated the ability of the fabricated diagnostic devices to detect DNA-based plant viruses from an infected tomato crop based on the loop-mediated isothermal amplification (LAMP) method. Moreover, we demonstrated the simultaneous detection of RNA-based plant viruses, which can infect cucurbits, by using the reverse transcription LAMP (RT-LAMP) method. The multiplex RT-LAMP assays revealed that multiple RNA viruses extracted from diseased cucumber leaves were successfully detected within 60 min, without any cross-contamination between reaction microchambers, on our diagnostic device. Full article
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Open AccessArticle
Photocatalytic Nanofabrication and Intracellular Raman Imaging of Living Cells with Functionalized AFM Probes
Micromachines 2020, 11(5), 495; https://doi.org/10.3390/mi11050495 - 13 May 2020
Abstract
Atomic force microscopy (AFM) is an effective platform for in vitro manipulation and analysis of living cells in medical and biological sciences. To introduce additional new features and functionalities into a conventional AFM system, we investigated the photocatalytic nanofabrication and intracellular Raman imaging [...] Read more.
Atomic force microscopy (AFM) is an effective platform for in vitro manipulation and analysis of living cells in medical and biological sciences. To introduce additional new features and functionalities into a conventional AFM system, we investigated the photocatalytic nanofabrication and intracellular Raman imaging of living cells by employing functionalized AFM probes. Herein, we investigated the effect of indentation speed on the cell membrane perforation of living HeLa cells based on highly localized photochemical oxidation with a catalytic titanium dioxide (TiO2)-functionalized AFM probe. On the basis of force–distance curves obtained during the indentation process, the probability of cell membrane perforation, penetration force, and cell viability was determined quantitatively. Moreover, we explored the possibility of intracellular tip-enhanced Raman spectroscopy (TERS) imaging of molecular dynamics in living cells via an AFM probe functionalized with silver nanoparticles in a homemade Raman system integrated with an inverted microscope. We successfully demonstrated that the intracellular TERS imaging has the potential to visualize distinctly different features in Raman spectra between the nucleus and the cytoplasm of a single living cell and to analyze the dynamic behavior of biomolecules inside a living cell. Full article
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Open AccessArticle
Magnetic Domain Transition of Adjacent Narrow Thin Film Strips with Inclined Uniaxial Magnetic Anisotropy
Micromachines 2020, 11(3), 279; https://doi.org/10.3390/mi11030279 - 08 Mar 2020
Abstract
This study deals a phenomenon of magnetic domain transition for the stepped magneto-impedance element. Our previous research shows that an element with 70° inclined easy axis has a typical characteristic of the domain transition, and the transition can be controlled by the normal [...] Read more.
This study deals a phenomenon of magnetic domain transition for the stepped magneto-impedance element. Our previous research shows that an element with 70° inclined easy axis has a typical characteristic of the domain transition, and the transition can be controlled by the normal magnetic field. In this paper, we apply this phenomenon and controlling method to the line arrangement adjacent to many body elements, in which mutual magnetic interaction exists. The result shows that the hidden inclined Landau–Lifshitz domain appears by applying a distributed normal field the same as an individual element. Full article
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