This paper presents a numerical simulation investigation into electroosmotic flow mixing in three-dimensional microchannels with patterned non-uniform surface zeta potentials. Three types of micromixers are investigated, namely a straight diagonal strip mixer (i.e. the non-uniform surface zeta potential is applied along straight, diagonal strips on the lower wall of the mixing channel), a staggered asymmetric herringbone strip mixer and a straight diagonal/symmetric herringbone strip mixer. A particle tracing algorithm is used to visualize and evaluate the mixing performance of the various mixers. The particle trajectories and Poincaré maps of the various mixers are calculated from the three-dimensional flow fields. The surface charge patterns on the lower walls of the microchannels induce electroosmotic chaotic advection in the low Reynolds number flow regime, and hence enhance the passive mixing effect in the microfluidic devices. A quantitative measure of the mixing performance based on Shannon entropy is employed to quantify the mixing of two miscible fluids. The results show that the mixing efficiency increases as the magnitude of the heterogeneous zeta potential ratio (|ζR|) is increased, but decreases as the aspect ratio (H/W) is increased. The mixing efficiency of the straight diagonal strip mixer with a length ratio of l/W ≤ 0.5 is slightly higher than that obtained from the same mixer with l/W ≤ 1.0. Finally, the staggered asymmetric herringbone strip mixer with ≤ 45°, ζR ≤ -1, l/W ≤ 0.5 and H/W ≤ 0.2 provides the optimal mixing performance of all the mixers presented in this study.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Computational Mechanics
- Mechanics of Materials
- Materials Science(all)