Have you wondered how to test your fancy new bioprinter once its done?
Well don't fear, we got you covered!
the chemical stuff
There is this (not really) magical substance called "Alginate".
And just in case someone fears this neat polysaccharid might be some dangerous chmical, don't worry, it's made (suprise, suprise! :) ) from algea and other seaweeds. It's used all the time as a natural thickening and jelling agent for such things as ice cream. And then there is of course also Molecular gastronomy...
You can get it easily online or in a well equipped grocery store!
So that is how you do it:
- Decide how much volume of "ink" you want
- Calculate the amount of alginate you need for a 0.5% w/v solution (e.g. 1 g for 200 mL)
- Slowly stir it into water, otherwise it will clump a little
- Optional: Add food coloring to your "ink", it will look pretty fancy
Your solution should always be stored in the fridge, otherwise it will go bad just like e.g. milk
Just dissolve the amount you need for a 2% w/v solution. It will be way more soluble than the alginate by the way ;)
Well, yeah .... that's basically all you need!
Inject the "ink" into the bath of Calcium citrate and congratulations to a wurst of alginate. Now let's see how the printer handles it!