Team:BostonU HW/Safety


Safety Considerations

Being a hardware team, we work in a computer laboratory with no chemicals, toxins, or extreme cold temperatures. However, we do have machines and tools. To ensure lab safety, we wear eye protection when working with the drills and soldering irons, and wear gloves when necessary.

In all collaboration experiments involving mammalian cells, no team member handled biological materials.

To create our microfluidic chip, we use a Polydimethylsiloxane (PDMS) layer to bind the control layer and the flow layer. This is a polymeric organosilicon compound that has 'no marked harmful effects on organisms in the environment' according to Ullmann's Encyclopedia.Thus, it is a safe silicone to use for our consumer market, which are biologists in labs. Consequently, the materials and tools we are using will not harm any living organism.

When all of our materials are used up, our materials can be safely dealt with. Our polycarbonate base for the entire setup and microfluidic chip is recyclable, and the rest of the plastics (the 3D printed parts and PDMS layer) can be easily discarded. However, these materials are safe and much cheaper than other technologies that do the same thing.