A team from the structural biology group located at the Marshall Space Flight Center in Huntsville Alabama is developing a platform suitable for cross-disciplinary microchannel research. The original objective of this engineering development effort was to deliver a multi-user flight-certified facility for iterative investigations of protein crystal growth; that is, Iterative Biological Crystallization. However, the unique capabilities of this facility are not limited to the low-gravity structural biology research community. Microchannel-based research in a number of other areas may be greatly accelerated through use of this facility. In particular, the potential for gas-liquid flow investigations and cellular biological research utilizing the exceptional pressure control and simplified coupling to macroscale diagnostics inherent with the facility will be discussed. Also noted will be the opportunities for research-specific modifications to the microchannel configuration, control and diagnostics.

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