Chapter 19

Taylor-Aris Dispersion

19.1 Introduction

As we have learned, most microfluidic flows are strictly laminar. For many applications this is an advantage, as the flow can be controlled very precisely. However, applications, such as, mixing are difficult in microfluidics because mass transport is mostly based on molecular diffusion. If two laminar flows are co-flowing, the mass transport across the interface is purely based on diffusion. However, if a flow is segmented, i.e., a plug of one liquid is (repeatedly) inserted into a second stream, the boundary is normal to the flow direction and thus experiences convective flow. In these cases we find that mixing is significantly enhanced. This is due to the fact that the molecular mass transport ...

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