Analysis of traveling-wave electro-osmotic pumping with double-sided electrode arrays

Hung Chun Yeh, Ruey-Jen Yang, Win Jet Luo

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

14 Citations (Scopus)


In this paper, a series of numerical simulations was performed to investigate the pumping performance of electro-osmotic micropumps containing electrode arrays patterned on the upper and lower sides of a microchannel. The simulations have been analyzed with a linear electro-osmotic model based upon the Debye-Hückel theory of the double layer. The potential drop across the diffuse layer is assumed to be less than 25 mV (kBT/e), and there is a linear response between the surface charge and the voltage drop across the double layer. The double layer is not resolved but is lumped into effective parameters that are imported from the Debye-Hückel and Stern layers. We examined the effects of the relative positioning of the electrodes in the opposing arrays (i.e., symmetrical or staggered), and the phase lag and the angular frequency of the alternating current (ac) signals applied to the electrodes within the two arrays. A critical height of the microchannel was observed, below which the interactions of the applied electrical potentials on the walls became significant. The optimum pumping effect was obtained when the electrode arrays were symmetrical to one another around the centerline of the channel and were activated by ac potentials with a 0° phase shift. The corresponding angular frequency of the maximum pumping velocity for different phase shifts of the applied ac signals was also determined. Overall, the simulation results presented in this paper provide a useful insight into the optimal design parameters and operating conditions for micropumps containing two arrays of microelectrodes on the microchannel walls.

Original languageEnglish
Article number056326
JournalPhysical Review E - Statistical, Nonlinear, and Soft Matter Physics
Issue number5
Publication statusPublished - 2011 May 25

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Statistical and Nonlinear Physics
  • Statistics and Probability
  • Condensed Matter Physics


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