[hackathon project] Developing an automated workflow for colorimetric testing using digital microfluidics

This is a project @gbathree and I are planning to working during the Great Lakes GOSH hackathon/retreat. Basically, we’d like to prototype the integration of a photospectrometer (e.g., Our-sci’s reflectomter or similar) to a DropBot digital microfluidics instrument (similar to a prototype we built for the OpenDrop last summer at a Digital Biology community gathering in Switzerland). This will allow us to perform a variety of automated colorimetric based lab tests (e.g., water quality, soil, food, etc.) in the field.


The hackathon/retreat is being held at a cottage on Conestogo Lake, an artificial reservoir created by the Conestogo Dam that is used to regulate water levels in the Grand River watershed. Because the lake is surrounded by farmland, it is sensitive to agricultural runoff following large rainfall events. Our plan is to demonstrate a system capable of sampling nitrate and phosphate levels from the lake using colorimetric test reagents developed by NECI (similar methods were described using an open-hardware spectrophotometer in a paper by the Pearce Lab).

If anyone is interested in working on this project, we’ll need help designing experiments, collect samples by canoe/paddle boat, running experiments, help with usability design, documentation, etc.


how neat!

In terms of colorimetric assay papers there was a nice paper out yesterday on 3D printed pipette adapters for doing ELISA assays on the pipette and using a cell phone for the readout instead of needing a plate reader.


(on a more personal note, that post-hackathon retreat sounds amazing! Regretfully I’ve become unable to attend the GOSH great lakes conference due to having a siggraph paper accepted that I must go present.)


You could try integrating the Open Fiber Spectrometer…


Really great idea!
I’m interested in participate on the project but not sure how could I help from Barcelona (experimental design and parallel testing on the sensors?).