Hydrogel waveguides have found increased use for variety of applications where biocompatibility and flexibility are important. In this work, we demonstrate the use of polyethylene glycol diacrylate (PEGDA) waveguides to realize a monolithic lab-on-a-chip device. We performed a comprehensive study on the swelling and optical properties for different chain lengths and concentrations in order to realize an integrated biocompatible waveguide in a microfluidic device for chemical sensing. Waveguiding properties of PEGDA hydrogel were used to guide excitation light into a microfluidic channel to measure the fluorescence emission profile of rhodamine 6G as well as collect the fluorescence signal from the same device. Overall, this work shows the potential of hydrogel waveguides to facilitate delivery and collection of optical signals for potential use in wearable and implantable lab-on-a-chip devices.
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