Prototyping Grant 2017

Miniature Pump Design That Uses Smart Materials Wins The Microfluidic Circle Competition

Toronto, Canada, May 10, 2017 ( – The winner of the 2017 Microfluidic Circle competition is Shaw Mountain Technology (SMT) from Boise (Idaho, USA). The winner receives US$50,000 worth of production and development services from uFluidix Inc.

Shaw Mountain Technology specializes in the production of smart materials. They also develop new actuators that use these materials. Smart materials are alloys that change shape once exposed to certain external stimuli such as temperature, magnetic or electric fields. SMT participated in this round of competition with their novel micro-pump that uses magnetic shape memory alloy to deliver micro-liters of fluid. Because they use smart materials, their design is a motorless pump with potential to be used in integrated microfluidic systems such as portable blood analyzers.

Microfluidics is a field that brings together biology and engineering for precise analysis or efficient synthesis of sub-droplet size of liquid. It has great potential in the field of Point-of-Care diagnostics, as well as many other applications, but the field has not witnessed a tangible impact on the market yet. Dr. Aarash Sofla, CEO of uFluidix, a manufacturer of microfluidic devices, says:

“During the past 15 years, thousands of microfluidic devices have been designed by more than 10,000 developers worldwide. Unfortunately, very few of these inventions have been commercialized. One major obstacle is the costly process of verification or optimization of the early stage prototypes, where the developers often have to go through several iterations, or test tens to hundreds of their devices.”

The Microfluidic Circle Prototyping Grant was launched in 2016 to identify and support startups and individual inventors who are commercializing groundbreaking microfluidic products with limited access to funding or production facilities. Dr. Aaron Smith, a senior engineer at SMT and winner of the 2017 competition, mentions:

“This is a great opportunity to work with uFluidix to bring our microfluidic technology to the market. This grant synergizes well with our current activities and will be instrumental for achieving our next major goal.”

The competition will soon be open for a new round.

About Shaw Mountain Technology

Shaw Mountain Technology LLC, established in 2015, is a Boise-based company that produces high-quality, advanced technology. The company specializes in shape memory alloys, particularly the magnetic shape memory alloy Ni-Mn-Ga, and develop various technologies within the fields of sensors, microfluidics, energy harvesters and actuators. For more information, please visit

About The Microfluidic Circle

The Microfluidic Circle is a professional community of individuals and companies created by uFluidix to bring together those who share one goal: help commercialize and grow the field of microfluidics. In this regard, the Circle interconnects business experts, engineers, scientists, investors, startups and the industry to promote collaboration toward introducing more successful microfluidics products. For more information, please visit

About uFluidix

uFluidix is a contract manufacturer that designs, develops, and fabricates custom microfluidic chips that are mainly used by medical devices, diagnostics, and therapeutics companies for a variety of microtechnology applications. For more information, please visit

Media Contact:

Kateryna Protsyk, Program Manager
The Microfluidic Circle
Email: [email protected]

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