The term electroosmotic flow refers to the bulk flow of an aqueous solution induced by the application of the electric field to the zeta potential. The characteristics of EOF in a microchannel depend upon the nature of the zeta potential, i.e., whether it is uniform or nonuniform. In this study, the full Navier-Stokes equation and the Nernst-Planck equation are used to model the change in EOF characteristics that occur when a step change in zeta potential is applied. It is found that the thickness of the electrical double layer gradually increases downstream from the location at which the zeta potential is increased. The results indicate that a step change in zeta potential causes a significant variation in the velocity profile and in the pressure distribution.
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