Massachusetts Institute of Technology researchers three-dimensionally (3D)-printed a miniature peristaltic pump in a step toward producing inexpensive mobile mass spectrometers.
The researchers used a multimaterial 3D printer to fabricate a flexible tube out of deformation-resistant hyperelastic material in a single pass, notching the tube's walls to reduce stress when squeezed.
They designed a lightweight structure to stabilize the tube, which can be peeled off later without causing damage.
The pump can generate and maintain a vacuum whose pressure is an order of magnitude lower than state-of-the-art diaphragm pumps.
The device prevents leakage of fluid or gas while minimizing heat from friction during pumping, and could be incorporated into a portable mass spectrometer.
From MIT News
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