Fluid and Mass Transport in Microfluidic Capillaries

Research Project

Researchers: Mr Nazmul Islam (Associated with, Principal investigator) ,  Prof Stan Miklavcic (Is principal investigator of , Associated with) ,  AsPr Bronwyn Hajek (Associated with) ,  Prof Lee White (Associated with)

Brief description This project is concerned with a theoretical investigation of particle transport in longitudinally asymmetric but axially symmetric capillaries, allowing for the influence of both diffusion and convection. In this study attention is focused on characterizing the influence of tube geometry and applied hydraulic pressure on the magnitude, direction and rate of transport of particles in axi-symmetric, saw-tooth shaped tubes. Three initial value problems are considered. The first involves the evolution of a fixed number of particles initially confined to a central wave-section. The second involves the evolution of the same initial state but including an ongoing production of particles in the central wave-section. The third involves the evolution of particles in a fully laden tube. Based on a physical model of convective-diffusive transport, assuming an underlying oscillatory fluid velocity field that is unaffected by the presence of the particles, we find that transport rates and even net transport directions depend critically on the design specifics, such as tube geometry, flow rate, initial particle configuration and whether or not particles are continuously introduced. The second transient scenario is qualitatively independent of the details of how particles are generated. In the third scenario there is no net transport. This fundamental study could engender greater understanding of practical systems, such as particle transport in periodic micro- and nano-ratchets.

Data time period: 2012 to 31 12 2016

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