Technical Briefs

Modeling and Simulation of Capillary Microfluidic Networks Based on Electrical Analogies

[+] Author and Article Information
Seok-Won Kang

Department of Mechanical Engineering,  Texas A&M University, College Station, TX 77843-3123

Debjyoti Banerjee

Department of Mechanical Engineering,  Texas A&M University, College Station, TX 77843-3123 dbanerjee@tamu.edu

J. Fluids Eng 133(5), 054502 (Jun 07, 2011) (6 pages) doi:10.1115/1.4004092 History: Received October 12, 2010; Revised April 08, 2011; Published June 07, 2011; Online June 07, 2011

In this study we implemented the network simulation techniques using macromodels (lumped models) for capillary driven flows in microfluidic networks. The flow characteristics in a flow junction, such as meniscus stretching and bifurcation, were studied and their effects on filling time as well as pressure drop were explored for various network configurations. The results from the network simulator are validated numerically using computational fluid dynamics (CFD) simulations by employing the volume-of-fluids (VOF) method. The predictions by the network simulator for free-surface flows in different microfluidic networks were found to be in good agreement with the results obtained from the VOF simulations for filling time and meniscus position.

Copyright © 2011 by American Society of Mechanical Engineers
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Grahic Jump Location
Figure 1

(a) (Top) Schematic and (bottom) solid model of the flow geometry of the capillary microfluidic network. (b) Equivalent system model for filling of the microfluidic network is represented by time-dependent resistor elements and potential sources.

Grahic Jump Location
Figure 2

Comparison of results obtained from macromodel and VOF method for filling time as a function of hydraulic diameter for a single micro-channel

Grahic Jump Location
Figure 3

Comparison of meniscus position and filling time for macromodel and VOF simulation for contact angle of 10°



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