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Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2011, 12(3), 1633-1649; doi:10.3390/ijms12031633

Non-Linear Electrohydrodynamics in Microfluidic Devices

Hewlett-Packard Laboratories, Hewlett-Packard Company, 1501 Page Mill Road, Palo Alto, CA 94304, USA
Received: 24 January 2011 / Revised: 10 February 2011 / Accepted: 24 February 2011 / Published: 3 March 2011
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Microfluidics)
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Since the inception of microfluidics, the electric force has been exploited as one of the leading mechanisms for driving and controlling the movement of the operating fluid and the charged suspensions. Electric force has an intrinsic advantage in miniaturized devices. Because the electrodes are placed over a small distance, from sub-millimeter to a few microns, a very high electric field is easy to obtain. The electric force can be highly localized as its strength rapidly decays away from the peak. This makes the electric force an ideal candidate for precise spatial control. The geometry and placement of the electrodes can be used to design electric fields of varying distributions, which can be readily realized by Micro-Electro-Mechanical Systems (MEMS) fabrication methods. In this paper, we examine several electrically driven liquid handling operations. The emphasis is given to non-linear electrohydrodynamic effects. We discuss the theoretical treatment and related numerical methods. Modeling and simulations are used to unveil the associated electrohydrodynamic phenomena. The modeling based investigation is interwoven with examples of microfluidic devices to illustrate the applications.
Keywords: dielectrophoresis; electrohydrodynamics; electrowetting; lab-on-a-chip; microfluidics; modeling; numerical simulation; reflective display dielectrophoresis; electrohydrodynamics; electrowetting; lab-on-a-chip; microfluidics; modeling; numerical simulation; reflective display
This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License (CC BY 3.0).

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Zeng, J. Non-Linear Electrohydrodynamics in Microfluidic Devices. Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2011, 12, 1633-1649.

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