Prof. Amit Agarwal


Prof. Amit Agarwal

Professor, IIT Bombay

Shanti Swarup Bhatnagar Prize in Engineering Sciences-2018

About the Speaker

Professor Amit Agrawal is an Indian engineer and an institute chair professor at the department of mechanical engineering of the Indian Institute of Technology, Bombay. He leads a group of scientists who are involved in the development of next-generation diagnostic microdevices. So far, his research work has translated into more than 150 articles published in peer-reviewed international journals and about a dozen patents. Prof. Agrawal also serves on the Editorial Board of three prestigious journals. He is also the elected Fellow of the Indian National Academy of Engineering (INAE) and the National Academy of Sciences India (NASI). He has been awarded with Shanti Swarup Bhatnagar Prize for Science and Technology, one of the highest award for Science in India for his work on Fluid Mechanics.

Title of the Talk

"Development of Innovative Point-of-Care Microdevices".

In this talk, He will present his ongoing effort in developing microfluidics based point-of-care microdevices. This includes blood plasma separation microdevice, constant wall temperature microdevice, and three-dimensional hydrodynamic focusing microdevice. Separating plasma from cellular elements of blood is imperative in disease diagnostics. Conventionally, blood plasma is separated in a centrifuge. However, this process of separation is difficult to replicate at the microscale, requires large sample volume, and is laborious and time-consuming. In this context, they have developed a blood plasma separation microdevice. The results obtained are extremely encouraging in terms of separation efficiency. Separation efficiency of almost 100% has been achieved with whole (undiluted) blood. Their microdevice avoids clogging of microchannels as the dimensions of the microchannels were kept comparatively large. The developed microdevice has been extensively tested. Demonstration of very high separation efficiency at extremely low cost with extremely high reliability are the primary highlights of our developed microdevice. The constant wall temperature microdevice is targeted towards the requirement of achieving isothermal condition in various lab-on-chip devices employed for chemical and biological processes. They propose the idea of employing diverging microchannel in conjunction with wall conduction for this purpose. Isothermal wall condition for a supplied constant heat flux condition is demonstrated experimentally. Subsequently, it was studied in detail using three dimensional numerical simulations to explore the idea over wider parameter range. For the set of optimal parameters, diverging microchannel would yield a temperature gradient less than 0.05 °C/mm. The three-dimensional hydrodynamic focusing microdevice is useful for making cells move in a single file; thereby allowing their properties to be probed unambiguously at a sensing station. Such technology is at the heart of flow cytometry and other medical devices. The design has evolved through systematic experiments and simulations, and has been comprehensively proved with blood cells, particles and dye. The talk will cover the various aspects of the design of the microdevices, their detailed characterization, and efforts in commercializing them.