SCAFflow – Microfluidics for Control of Bone Tissue Characteristics in Macroscaffolds

In this project, the goal is to optimize geometry and flow characteristics of scaffolds for optimal cell growth and nutrition of bone cells and to evaluate the characteristic of the optimized scaffolds with respect to tissue maturation and under clinically-relevant loading regimes

[Translate to English:] SCAFflow Logo

In this project we investigate the influence of various synthetic surfaces on blood viscosity and visco-elasticity. These blood characteristics need to be considered in the development of cardio-respiratory assist devices.

Surfaces roughness resin colored in orange and blue/green tones
Surface star shaped structure

Within this project we will extend our already available µPIV equipment to a V3V system, the latest V3V-Flex™ volumetric PIV system from TSI that allows to do not only planar but volumetric measurements of flows in microchannel, and investigate 3D flow field and fluid-structure interaction in a pump-membrane device and flow field and shear stress distribution in a scaffold in a micro-bioreactor


According to WHO, some 2.2 billion people around the world do not have safely managed drinking water. Biofluidslab contributes to this topic with the development of a mobile desalination unit for sea and brackish water mounted on a standard bicycle. With this device, clean drinking water can be gained out of sea water even while cycling!

Bicycle with mobile desalination unit attached to the back, connected by chain with bicycle drive

High-performance hollow-fiber membranes for applications in biomedical engineering and mass separation technology.
Aim of this project is to establish a manufacturing process for a novel generation of membranes with more flexible dimensions and surface structures, using biocompatible membrane polymers with high selectivity.

Fiber spinning plant
spinning plant, insulated hoses lead into metal housing of spinneret
Polymer solution is further processed, passed through a spinneret and cured in a water bath to obtain hollow fibers

Aim of the project MILL – “Minimal Invasive Liquid Lung” - is to develop an intravascular membrane catheter for gas exchange in venous blood with an integrated propulsion system. Membrane technology, fluid dynamics and biomedical design methods are applied to develop a device that can be minimal invasively inserted into the vena cava and remove at least 20 % of metabolic CO2 production. As a novelty, liquid perfluorocarbon (PFC) is used to sweep the fiber lumens. Using liquid PFC avoids the risk of gas embolism in case of leakage as PFCs have high CO2 solubility and are used as blood substitutes in clinical applications.


Aim of the LiquiClear project is the development and testing of an intravascular membrane catheter in which CO2 is removed from the blood. As a transport medium for the CO2 from the body, the blood substitute perfluorocarbon (PFC) is used. The membrane catheter has a built-in miniature pump that compensates for pressure loss and controls blood flow for optimal passage through the membrane. In an external oxygenator, the CO2 is released into the air.

Inner workings of the heart pump

The Assistocor device is a tiny heart catheter pump with air propulsion for assistance of temporary cardiac failure.

  • Pumping unit powered by micro turbine, torque transmission over magnetic coupling and hermetic seperation
  • Pump rotor outer diameter 5,05 mm
  • Pump's rotational speed controlled by helium flow through turbine,
    2.5 L/min against 100 mmHg at ~ 40000 rpm
  • Main components 3D printed alumina
  • Minimal invasive placement

The IVFA is a miniaturized left ventricular assist device that is fixed to the ventricular apex and increases pressure directly in the ventricle to ensure blood discharge into the aorta.
Primary field of application is cardiomyopathy.

In pulse-controlled mode the pump conveys 3L blood/min at 16800 rpm, pressure difference 80 mmHg.

The blood pump is powered by a small electrical motor, a magnetic coupling ensures hermetic separation of motor and blood contacting components.

Heart sine curve