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Numerical Study of Droplet Formation inside a Microfluidic Flow-Focusing Device


Y. Li1 M. Jain1 K. Nandakumar1
1Cain Department of Chemical Engineering, Louisiana State University, Baton Rouge, LA, USA


Droplet formation process at ┬Ád=20 cp and Qo/Qi = 10 where mono-dispersed droplets that are larger than the width of the orifice are observed in this case.

The micro-nanometer sized droplets have tremendous applications in bio-diagnostics, polymerization processes etc. In this work, we numerically investigate the droplet formation process of silicone oil in aqueous solution in a MFF device. A conservative level-set method is adopted to numerically model the droplet formation process numerically. The mono-dispersed and poly-dispersed droplet breaking processes are studied at different viscosity of the dispersed phase for a range of capillary number. The numerical solutions demonstrate good agreement with the experimental observations for droplet size and poly-dispersity data. The interplay between the surface tension forces and shear forces at the interface governs the droplet size distribution during the breakup process. The poly-dispersed breaking is also influenced by the viscosity of the dispersed phase.

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