In this protocol, we use the Sigmacote solution from Sigma-Aldrich. This solution of silicone in heptane will form a microscopic thin film on the surface of the probe.
Warning! Sigmacote chemicals present several hazard statements. Handling of Sigmacote requires safety precautions, according to the safety data sheet provided by the supplier.
- A desiccator with a vacuum pump system.
- Sigmacote solution (Sigma SL2-25ML). Please refer to Sigmacote product information sheet for more information.
- FluidFM probe.
- A container for the probe (in this case, 12 well plates were used).
- Disposable wipers.
- Plastic transfer-pipette.
- Prepare the desiccator with one disposable wiper and a container for the probe.
- Place the FluidFM probe upside down inside the container.
- Pipette 1-2 drops of Sigmacote onto the bottom surface of the desiccator.
- Apply vacuum for 1h. Note: At this step, the absolute pressure inside the desiccator must reach +200mbar.
- For an optimal coating, heat the probe at 80°C for 1h in a dry oven.
- The probe is now ready to use for further experiments, and can be stored up to one week. If not using it within a week, repeat the whole procedure for optimal performance.
Depending on the environmental conditions (humidity, temperature), condensation might occur when releasing the pressure by opening the desiccator, or in the oven. Adding desiccants both in the oven and the desiccator should solve this issue.