An experimentally validated mathematical model of a microfluidic device with nozzle-shaped electrode configuration for realizing dielectrophoresis based 3D-focusing is presented in the article. Two right-triangle shaped electrodes on the top and bottom surfaces make up the nozzle-shaped electrode configuration. The mathematical model consists of equations describing the motion of microparticles as well as profiles of electric potential, electric field, and fluid flow inside the microchannel. The influence of forces associated with inertia, gravity, drag, virtual mass, dielectrophoresis, and buoyancy are taken into account in the model. The performance of the microfluidic device is quantified in terms of horizontal and vertical focusing parameters. The influence of operating parameters, such as applied electric potential and volumetric flow rate, as well as geometric parameters, such as electrode dimensions and microchannel dimensions, are analyzed using the model. The performance of the microfluidic device enhances with an increase in applied electric potential and reduction in volumetric flow rate. Additionally, the performance of the microfluidic device improves with reduction in microchannel height and increase in microparticle radius while degrading with increase in reduction in electrode length and width. The model is of great benefit as it allows for generating working designs of the proposed microfluidic device with the desired performance metrics.
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