Summary: Systems-Level Modeling of Particle Steering using
ENES489P: Hands-On Systems Engineering Project Report
ISR Advisor: Dr. John Baras
Fischell Department of Bioengineering
University of Maryland
December 7, 2010
Systems engineering is an effective tool in modeling many different types of processes.
It can be used to simplify complex biological systems, for example, by defining their sub-
systems, requirements, constraints, and the relationship between them. In the following report, a
systems-level approach is used to analyze a microfluidic particle steering device. The device
functions by sensing the position of a fluorescently tagged particle within a microfluidic channel
and comparing it to a desired location that is entered by the researcher. This information is
analyzed by a control algorithm that processes the error between the current and wanted position
of the particle. Then a computer sends output to a steering mechanism that will guide the
particles to the proper location. This process is repeated until the particle has been steered along
an entire path.