Microfabricated capillary array electrophoresis (microCAE) microchannel plates are the next generation of bioanalytical separation devices. To fully exploit the capabilities of microCAE devices, supporting technology such as robotic sample loading, gel loading, microplate washing, and data analysis must be developed. Here, we describe a device for loading gel into radial capillary array electrophoresis microplates and for plate washing and drying. The microplates are locked into a loading module, and high-pressure helium is used to drive aqueous separation media or wash solutions into the microchannels through fixtures connected to the central anode reservoir. Microplates are rapidly (30 s to 5 min) loaded with separation media, such as 3%-4.8% linear polyacrylamide or 0.7%-3.0% hydroxyethyl cellulose, for electrophoresis. The effective and rapid gel-filling and plate-cleaning methods together with short electrophoretic analysis times (2-30 min) make microCAE systems versatile and powerful nucleic acid analysis platforms.