We conducted systematic numerical investigations of the flow characteristics within the entrance region of rectangular microchannels. The effects of the geometrical aspect ratio and roughness on entrance lengths were analyzed. The incompressible laminar Navier–Stokes equations were solved using finite volume method (FVM). In the simulation, hydraulic diameters (
) ranging from 50 to 200 µm were studied, and aspect ratios of 1, 1.25, 1.5, 1.75, and 2 were considered as well. The working fluid was set as water, and the Reynolds number ranged from 0.5 to 100. The results showed a good agreement with the conducted experiment. Correlations are proposed to predict the entrance lengths of microchannels with respect to different aspect ratios. Compared with other correlations, these new correlations are more reliable because a more practical inlet condition was considered in our investigations. Instead of considering the influence of the width and height of the microchannels, in our investigation we proved that the critical role is played by the aspect ratio, representing the combination of the aforementioned parameters. Furthermore, the existence of rough elements obviously shortens the entrance region, and this effect became more pronounced with increasing relative roughness and Reynolds number. A similar effect could be seen by shortening the roughness spacing. An asymmetric distribution of rough elements decreased the entrance length compared with a symmetric distribution, which can be extrapolated to other irregularly distributed forms.
This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License
which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited