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Article

Breakup Dynamics of Semi-dilute Polymer Solutions in a Microfluidic Flow-focusing Device

1
School of Optoelectronic Engineering and Instrumentation Science, Dalian University of Technology, Dalian 116024, China
2
School of Aerospace Engineering, Beijing Institute of Technology, Beijing 100081, China
3
Department of Engineering Mechanics, Zhejiang University, Hangzhou 310027, China
*
Authors to whom correspondence should be addressed.
These authors contributed equally to this work.
Micromachines 2020, 11(4), 406; https://doi.org/10.3390/mi11040406
Received: 14 March 2020 / Revised: 12 April 2020 / Accepted: 12 April 2020 / Published: 14 April 2020
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Electrokinetics in Micro-/nanofluidic Devices)
Droplet microfluidics involving non-Newtonian fluids is of great importance in both fundamental mechanisms and practical applications. In the present study, breakup dynamics in droplet generation of semi-dilute polymer solutions in a microfluidic flow-focusing device were experimentally investigated. We found that the filament thinning experiences a transition from a flow-driven to a capillary-driven regime, analogous to that of purely elastic fluids, while the highly elevated viscosity and complex network structures in the semi-dilute polymer solutions induce the breakup stages with a smaller power-law exponent and extensional relaxation time. It is elucidated that the elevated viscosity of the semi-dilute solution decelerates filament thinning in the flow-driven regime and the incomplete stretch of polymer molecules results in the smaller extensional relaxation time in the capillary-driven regime. These results extend the understanding of breakup dynamics in droplet generation of non-Newtonian fluids and provide guidance for microfluidic synthesis applications involving dense polymeric fluids. View Full-Text
Keywords: droplet microfluidics; breakup dynamics; filament thinning; non-Newtonian fluids; flow-focusing device; extensional flow; semi-dilute polymer solutions droplet microfluidics; breakup dynamics; filament thinning; non-Newtonian fluids; flow-focusing device; extensional flow; semi-dilute polymer solutions
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MDPI and ACS Style

Xue, C.-D.; Chen, X.-D.; Li, Y.-J.; Hu, G.-Q.; Cao, T.; Qin, K.-R. Breakup Dynamics of Semi-dilute Polymer Solutions in a Microfluidic Flow-focusing Device. Micromachines 2020, 11, 406. https://doi.org/10.3390/mi11040406

AMA Style

Xue C-D, Chen X-D, Li Y-J, Hu G-Q, Cao T, Qin K-R. Breakup Dynamics of Semi-dilute Polymer Solutions in a Microfluidic Flow-focusing Device. Micromachines. 2020; 11(4):406. https://doi.org/10.3390/mi11040406

Chicago/Turabian Style

Xue, Chun-Dong, Xiao-Dong Chen, Yong-Jiang Li, Guo-Qing Hu, Tun Cao, and Kai-Rong Qin. 2020. "Breakup Dynamics of Semi-dilute Polymer Solutions in a Microfluidic Flow-focusing Device" Micromachines 11, no. 4: 406. https://doi.org/10.3390/mi11040406

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