Numerical Simulation of Electroosmotic Flow with Step Change in Zeta Potential
Author(s)Chen, X.; Lam, Yee Cheong; Chen, X. Y.; Chai, J.C.; Yang, C.
Electroosmotic flow is a convenient mechanism for transporting polar fluid in a microfluidic device. The flow is generated through the application of an external electric field that acts on the free charges that exists in a thin Debye layer at the channel walls. The charge on the wall is due to the chemistry of the solid-fluid interface, and it can vary along the channel, e.g. due to modification of the wall. This investigation focuses on the simulation of the electroosmotic flow (EOF) profile in a cylindrical microchannel with step change in zeta potential. The modified Navier-Stoke equation governing the velocity field and a non-linear two-dimensional Poisson-Boltzmann equation governing the electrical double-layer (EDL) field distribution are solved numerically using finite control-volume method. Continuities of flow rate and electric current are enforced resulting in a non-uniform electrical field and pressure gradient distribution along the channel. The resulting parabolic velocity distribution at the junction of the step change in zeta potential, which is more typical of a pressure-driven velocity flow profile, is obtained.
Innovation in Manufacturing Systems and Technology (IMST);
Electroosmotic flow, Electrical double-layer, Pressure-driven flow, Zeta potential