Surface Modification

In order to develop new, reliable, efficient and multifunctional micro and nano components as e.g. Bio-MEMS, lab-on-a-chip or microfluidic devices, the precise control and manipulation of the surface properties of the materials are essential.

Innovation Through Functional Areas

The integration of functional areas in the chip in form of nanocoatings increases evermore. On nano level molecules are bound to the surface material via strong covalent bonds. Depending on the density and strength of the covalent bond, the hydrolytic, chemical and thermal stability changes in relation to the chemistry used.

Through the use of so-called triggers, specific chemical coating methods offer capabilities for local limited surface modification with high spatial resolution.

As a consequence biocompatible, bioselective or biorepellent coatings, as well as, local immobilization of molecules are fabricated for the use in medical engineering and biotechnology. The wide range of applicable functional end groups makes for instance the immobilization of complex (bio-) organic molecules possible like antibodies, DNA, proteins, cells, aptamers, catalytic and redox-active components.

Hydrolytic, Chemical & Thermal Stability| Bioselectivity

Chemical surface treatment e.g. with silanes, are used to adjust the hydropathy – i.e whether a surface material is hydrophilic, hydrophobic, amphiphilic, etc.. The adjustement of hydrophathy helps to control the wettability (see images below), the surface energy and the chemical activity of the surface.

Silanes have self-aligning properties. They react spontaneously with the material surface and build closed layers. This is the basis that silanes have several advantages versus other chemical surface treatment methods which have to be induced to a reaction first.

Through the physical treatment of the material surface with for instance oxygen plasma, the surface energy can be specifically tuned. In further steps, specific molecules can be bound to the activated surface for example through the plasma of specific molecules.

According to your wishes, we modify the surface of your chip! The modification can be conducted both locally or on the entire surface.

Flow Chemistry – Applications


  • Enables the cascade reactions with proteins and catalysts, which are affixed to the duct walls
  • Purification through extraction / phase separation with the aid of hydrophobic and hydrophilic channels
  • Micro capillary electrophoresis (µCE)
    • Control of electro-osmotic flows for the separation of ions
    • Adjustment of maturing properties for DNA separation

Bio Capture – Applications


  • Change of duct walls / electrodes so that elements can be detected selectively

BioMEMS – Applications


  • BioMEMS for genomics, proteomics, drug-delivery analysis, molecular assembly, tissue engineering, biosensor development, nanoscale imaging, etc.

Biotechnology and Medical Engineering – Applications


  • Huge diversity when applying biocompatible, bioselective or biorepellent coatingsas well as the local immobilization of molecules.
  • The variety of possible applicable functional end groups allow the binding of the following molecules to the surface:
    • Antibodies
    • DNA
    • Proteins
    • Cells
    • Aptamers
    • Catalytic and redox active units

If you have any questions or requests, please call +49 (0) 231 88 68 077