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Optimal Control of Colloidal Trajectories in Inertial Microfluidics Using the Saffman Effect

Institut für Theoretische Physik, Technische Universität Berlin, D-10623 Berlin, Germany
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Micromachines 2020, 11(6), 592; https://doi.org/10.3390/mi11060592
Received: 27 May 2020 / Revised: 11 June 2020 / Accepted: 12 June 2020 / Published: 15 June 2020
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Inertial Microfluidics)
In inertial microfluidics colloidal particles in a Poiseuille flow experience the Segré-Silberberg lift force, which drives them to specific positions in the channel cross section. An external force applied along the microchannel induces a cross-streamline migration to a new equilibrium position because of the Saffman effect. We apply optimal control theory to design the time protocol of the axial control force in order to steer a single particle as precisely as possible from a channel inlet to an outlet at a chosen target position. We discuss the influence of particle radius and channel length and show that optimal steering is cheaper than using a constant control force. Using a single optimized control-force protocol, we demonstrate that even a pulse of particles spread along the channel axis can be steered to a target and that particles of different radii can be separarted most efficiently. View Full-Text
Keywords: inertial microfluidics; optimal control; Saffman effect inertial microfluidics; optimal control; Saffman effect
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MDPI and ACS Style

Rühle, F.; Schaaf, C.; Stark, H. Optimal Control of Colloidal Trajectories in Inertial Microfluidics Using the Saffman Effect. Micromachines 2020, 11, 592.

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