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Micromachines 2018, 9(2), 57;

Droplet Breakup Dynamics in Bi-Layer Bifurcating Microchannel

Department of Mechanical, Materials and Manufacturing Engineering, University of Nottingham Ningbo China, Ningbo 315100, China
School of Engineering and Physical Sciences, Heriot-Watt University Malaysia, No. 1 Jalan Venna P5/2, Precinct 5, 62200 Putrajaya, Malaysia
Department of Chemical Sciences, University of Huddersfield, Queensgate, Huddersfield HD1 3DH, UK
Institute of Advanced Study, Shenzhen University, Nanshan District, Shenzhen 518060, China
Research Group of Fluids and Thermal Engineering, University of Nottingham Ningbo China, Ningbo 315100, China
Research Group of Fluids and Thermal Engineering, Faculty of Engineering, University of Nottingham, Nottingham NG7 2RD, UK
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 30 November 2017 / Revised: 20 January 2018 / Accepted: 28 January 2018 / Published: 31 January 2018
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Breakup of droplets at bi-layer bifurcating junction in polydimethylsiloxane (PDMS) microchannel has been investigated by experiments and numerical simulation. The pressure drop in bi-layer bifurcating channel was investigated and compared with single-layer bifurcating channel. Daughter droplet size variation generated in bi-layer bifurcating microchannel was analyzed. The correlation was proposed to predict the transition between breakup and non-breakup conditions of droplets in bi-layer bifurcating channel using a phase diagram. In the non-breakup regime, droplets exiting port can be switched via tuning flow resistance by controlling radius of curvature, and or channel height ratio. Compared with single-layer bifurcating junction, 3-D cutting in diagonal direction from bi-layer bifurcating junction induces asymmetric fission to form daughter droplets with distinct sizes while each size has good monodispersity. Lower pressure drop is required in the new microsystem. The understanding of the droplet fission in the novel microstructure will enable more versatile control over the emulsion formation, fission and sorting. The model system can be developed to investigate the encapsulation and release kinetics of emulsion templated particles such as drug encapsulated microcapsules as they flow through complex porous media structures, such as blood capillaries or the porous tissue structures, which feature with bifurcating junctions. View Full-Text
Keywords: microfluidics; droplet fission; encapsulation; emulsions; breakup microfluidics; droplet fission; encapsulation; emulsions; breakup

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Ren, Y.; Koh, K.S.; Yew, M.; Chin, J.K.; Chan, Y.; Yan, Y. Droplet Breakup Dynamics in Bi-Layer Bifurcating Microchannel. Micromachines 2018, 9, 57.

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