DIY Micro Dispensing and Bio Printing

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Robotics, Pipettes Medias and more for Micro Dispensing and Bio Printing

Automatic liquid handling or microdispensing of small liquid amounts is useful in the production of biochips, Lab-on-a-Chip (LOC), biosensors and for tissue engineering. Crucial elements are: - Precise manipulation / XY(Z) robotics - Micro-dispensing and other formes liquid manipulation - Printing medias

First approaches during HackteriaLab 2011

Robotic Stage

HackStage V1

Small and precise mechanical manipulator made from recycled material and using open hard and software.

Basic principle:
- Two CD / DVD drives with stepper motor mounted cross wise
- Both drives are mounted fix, one is the object carrier the other is the manipulator
- Two stepper motor drivers (ex. pololu 4988) with micro stepping
- RepRap driver-software teacup on an arduino board
- G-Code may be generated with InkScape and G-Code plugin
- Controlled by ReplicatorG using G-Code

Printer in action video at:


Calibration Measurement. With a micro stepping motor driver a precision of less than 60 um can be achieved.


Screenshot with ReplicatorG and WebCam image


"Printed" sample


Comercial Dispensing Robot from MicroDrop at Ecole Polytechnique Federal Lausanne (EPFL)

Can be used for:
- Laser cutting masks or light materials using a DVD-laser-diode
Here an istruction on how to make a laser cutter: DIY Micro Laser Cutter
- Manipulate organisms or material
- Stage for microscopy
- Tissue engineering
(yeah yeah we print some fungi :-)
- Mini extruder
- SMD pick and place / stencil cutter


Some link to sources:

RepRap G-Code:
Teacup Firmware:
Pololu Motor Driver:
InkScape to G-Code:
ReplicatorG Printing Program


Printing tip mad from a glas tube

First try printing tip made from glas tubing


First try DIY piezo nozzle (does not work properly)

Tip holding mechanism

Printing medias

First approaches during HackteriaLab 2011

Funghi growing on polyvinyl with LB-Medium

Finally urs got it done, super awesome

Related Links

DIY Laser Cutter:
RepRap Laser Sintering:
RepRap Tissue Engineering:
DIY Piezo Printhead
Comercial dispensing robots and piezo nozzles
Growing Body Parts in the Lab Becomes Reality
Controlling FIAlab Devices for Microfluidics
Are Mushrooms The New Plastic
easy-to-use atomic force microscopes (AFM) and scanning tunneling microscopes (STM)
Hollow cantilever for liquid dispensing
General cell printing using an ink-jet