Efficient and Adaptive Error Recovery in a Micro-Electrode-Dot-Array Digital Microfluidic Biochip

Zipeng Li*, Kelvin Yi Tse Lai, John McCrone, Po Hsien Yu, Krishnendu Chakrabarty, Miroslav Pajic, Tsung Yi Ho, Chen-Yi Lee

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

17 Scopus citations


A digital microfluidic biochip (DMFB) is an attractive technology platform for automating laboratory procedures in biochemistry. In recent years, DMFBs based on a micro-electrode-dot-array (MEDA) architecture have been proposed. MEDA biochips can provide advantages of better capability of droplet manipulation and real-time sensing ability. However, errors are likely to occur due to defects, chip degradation, and the lack of precision inherent in biochemical experiments. Therefore, an efficient error-recovery strategy is essential to ensure the correctness of assays executed on MEDA biochips. By exploiting MEDA-specific advances in droplet sensing, we present a novel error-recovery technique to dynamically reconfigure the biochip using real-time data provided by on-chip sensors. Local recovery strategies based on probabilistic-timed-automata are presented for various types of errors. An online synthesis technique and a control flow are also proposed to connect local-recovery procedures with global error recovery for the complete bioassay. Moreover, an integer linear programming-based method is also proposed to select the optimal local-recovery time for each operation. Laboratory experiments using a fabricated MEDA chip are used to characterize the outcomes of key droplet operations. The PRISM model checker and three benchmarks are used for an extensive set of simulations. Our results highlight the effectiveness of the proposed error-recovery strategy.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)601-614
Number of pages14
JournalIEEE Transactions on Computer-Aided Design of Integrated Circuits and Systems
Issue number3
StatePublished - 1 Mar 2018


  • Digital microfluidics
  • error recovery
  • micro-electrode-dot-array (MEDA)
  • online synthesis
  • optimization

Fingerprint Dive into the research topics of 'Efficient and Adaptive Error Recovery in a Micro-Electrode-Dot-Array Digital Microfluidic Biochip'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this