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Joshua Grolman, Materials Science and Engineering, PnD Candidate
In this communication, we propose a method of micro-patterning alginate gel fibers with aqueous core, alginate shell architecture in a one-step and continuous process. By harnessing the interfacial tension that surmounts from the instability between dissimilar liquids and their respective fluid dynamics, we are able to control the formation and structure of said alginate gels. This is accomplished with core-shell co-flow glass capillary devices that introduce the gelation agent in the innermost core flow of the three glass capillaries. Upon direct fluid contact, an initial gel forms, of cross-link density and strength characteristic of its respective inner gelator fluid flow rate, concentration, and counter-ion. By so tuning these traits, we are able to traverse fiber-forming regimes to those of droplet manufacture.