Mechanical pumps are the main patented technologies, but some non-mechanical pumps are in full development for emerging applications
PUMPING SYSTEM: THE HEART OF THE MICROFLUIDIC DEVICE
Globally, the market for pumps for microfluidic devices is growing quickly. Pumps are the cornerstone of a microfluidic system and they are the key component that allows the motion of fluids in an accurate and reliable manner through the device (reservoir, chamber, microchannel). According to Market Research Future, the global micropumps market should reach $5.28 billion by 2027 at a CAGR of 17.2%. The biomedical and pharmaceutical industries are driving the market. Indeed, micropumps are essential for applications such as DNA chips, lab-on-a-chip technologies or drug delivery. They are also used in other domains, including flow chemistry, inkjet printing or IC cooling.
The IP landscape related to pumps for microfluidic devices involve both industrial (Epson, Baxter, Debiotech, Honeywell, Medtronic, etc.) and academic (Caltech, Stanford, Fraunhofer, etc.) applicants. This indicates that technologies for micropumps are still in development. This development is driven in particular by the increasing number of biomedical devices but also by the increasing need of micropumping systems for microelectronic components. To match all those various applications, more than 10 different technologies are developed, including mechanical pumps (electrostatic, electromagnetic, piezoelectric, thermopneumatic, shape memory alloy, bimetallic, ion polymer conducing film) and non-mechanical pumps (magneto-hydrodynamic, electro-hydrodynamic, electroosmotic, electrowetting, electrochemical, bubble-type). The IP activity for each technology is analyzed in this patent landscape.
The analysis of the technical issues addressed by patents related to pumps for microfluidic devices supports what we observed on the market. Mechanical pumps are predominant, but new applicants, in particular from China, could increase the development of non-mechanical pumps for microfluidics.
IDENTIFY KEY PLAYERS
The report provides a ranking and analysis of the relative strength of the top patent holders derived from their portfolio size, patent citation networks, countries of patent filings and current legal status of patents. Through this in depth analysis, we have identified 20+ major players. Each of those players is profiled in this report: detailed portfolio analysis with patent activities, key patents, impact of portfolio, granted patents near expiration and IP strategies.
The IP landscape for pumps for microfluidic devices is driven by American applicants. But a few European applicants also show interesting IP assets.
IDENTIFY KEY TECHNOLOGIES
This IP landscape for pumps for microfluidic devices reveals the key patents in this domain, as well as the pump technology they are related to. Two technologies in particular received more focus from patent applicants: piezoelectric and electroosmotic technologies. However, recently, Chinese patent applicants started to show a strong interest for electrohydrodynamic pumps.
KEY PLAYERS: IP PROFILE & KEY PATENTS
The patent landscape related to pumps for microfluidic devices provides a detailed profile for each key player, including portfolio size, filing countries, leadership assessment as well as a selection of key patents.
This analysis reveals that most of the key players are focused in the same mechanical technology: piezoelectric technology. However several key players show more interest in non-mechanical pumps, including Intel, Stanford, and MIT.
This report also includes an Excel database containing all of the analyzed patents. The database allows for multi-criteria searches and includes patent publication number, hyperlinks to the original documents, priority date, title, abstract, patent assignees and legal status for each member of the patent family.
objectives of the REPORT
- Understand the IP landscape for pumps for microfluidic devices
- Identify key patents
- Classify major players and the relative strength of their patent portfolio
- Identify new players and IP collaboration networks