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# Microfluidics: Modeling, Mechanics and Mathematics

## Description

This practical, lab-based approach to nano- and microfluidics provides readers with a wealth of practical techniques, protocols, and experiments ready to be put into practice in both research and industrial settings. The practical approach is ideally suited to researchers and R&D staff in industry; additionally the interdisciplinary approach to the science of nano- and microfluidics enables readers from a range of different academic disciplines to broaden their understanding.

Dr Rapp fully engages with the multidisciplinary nature of the subject. Alongside traditional fluid/transport topics, there is a wealth of coverage of materials and manufacturing techniques, chemical modification/surface functionalization, biochemical analysis, and the biosensors involved.

As well as providing a clear and concise overview to get started into the multidisciplinary field of microfluidics and practical guidance on techniques, pitfalls and troubleshooting, this book supplies:

- A set of hands-on experiments and protocols that will help setting up lab experiments but which will also allow a quick start into practical work.
- A collection of microfluidic structures, with 3D-CAD and image data that can be used directly (files provided on a companion website).

- A practical guide to the successful design and implementation of nano- and microfluidic processes (e.g. biosensing) and equipment (e.g., biosensors, such as diabetes blood glucose sensors)
- Provides techniques, experiments, and protocols ready to be put to use in the lab, in an academic, or industry setting
- A collection of 3D-CAD and image files is provided on a companion website

## About the author

Dr Bastian Rapp is currently employed as Head of Group at the Karlsruhe Institute of Technology (KIT), Institute of Microstructure Technology, Eggenstein-Leopoldshafen, Germany. His research interests are biomechanical engineering, microfluidics, biomaterials and microfabrication.

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### Microfluidics - Bastian E. Rapp

**Microfluidics: Modeling, Mechanics, and Mathematics **

Bastian E. Rapp

**Table of Contents **

**Cover image **

**Title page **

**Copyright **

**Dedication **

**Preface **

**Acknowledgement **

**List of Figures **

**List of Tables **

**List of Listings **

**List of Acronyms **

**List of Abbreviations **

**List of Symbols **

**List of Constants **

**List of Chemicals **

**Conversions **

**I: Fundamentals **

**I: Fundamentals**

**Chapter 1: Introduction **

**1.1 What is Microfluidics? **

**1.2 A Brief History of Microfluidics **

**1.3 Commercial Aspects **

**1.4 About This Book **

**1.5 Structure of This Book **

**Chapter 2: Introduction to Maple **

**2.1 Introduction **

**2.2 Elementary Maple Commands **

**2.3 The File Core.txt **

**2.4 The File Corefunctions.txt **

**2.5 The Neptunlib **

**2.6 Summary **

**Chapter 3: Engineering Mathematics **

**3.1 Differential Equations **

**3.2 Important Functions **

**3.3 Commonly Used Calculus Tricks **

**3.4 Summary **

**Chapter 4: Series **

**4.1 Introduction **

**4.2 Taylor Series **

**4.3 Fourier Series **

**4.4 Fourier-Bessel Series **

**4.5 Conclusion **

**Chapter 5: Transforms **

**5.1 Fourier Transform **

**5.2 Laplace Transform **

**5.3 Summary **

**Chapter 6: Thermodynamics **

**6.1 Atomic Model **

**6.2 Weights and Concentrations **

**6.3 Important Terms and Concepts in Thermodynamics **

**6.4 Ideal Gases **

**6.5 Idealized Thermodynamic Processes **

**6.6 First Law of Thermodynamics **

**6.7 Second Law of Thermodynamics **

**6.8 Third Law of Thermodynamics **

**6.9 Heat and Mass Transfer **

**6.10 SUMMARY **

**Chapter 7: Vector Calculus **

**7.1 Scalars and Vectors **

**7.2 Important Theorems in Vector Calculus **

**7.3 Coordinate System Transformation **

**7.4 Position, Velocity, and Acceleration **

**7.5 Jacobian Matrix **

**7.6 Operators Transformed into the different Coordinate Systems **

**7.7 Summary **

**Chapter 8: Differential Equations **

**8.1 Important Differential Equations **

**8.2 General Solutions to Selected Ordinary Differential Equations **

**8.3 General Solutions to Selected Partial Differential Equations **

**II: Bulk Fluid Flows **

**II: Bulk Fluid Flows**

**Chapter 9: Fluids **

**9.1 Introduction **

**9.2 Solids, Liquids, and Gases at the Atomic Scale **

**9.3 Control Volumes **

**9.4 Fluid Properties **

**9.5 Momentum Transport **

**9.6 Heat Transport **

**9.7 Mass Transport **

**9.8 Boundary Conditions **

**9.9 Dimensionless Numbers **

**9.10 Summary **

**Chapter 10: Conservation of Mass: The Continuity Equation **

**10.1 Fluid Flow in the Bulk **

**10.2 Continuity Equation **

**10.3 Integral Representation of the Flowrate **

**10.4 Mass Balance **

**10.5 Derivation using Gauss’s Theorem **

**10.6 Combined Convection and Diffusion: The Convection-Diffusion Equation **

**10.7 Summary **

**Chapter 11: Conservation of Momentum: The Navier-Stokes Equation **

**11.1 Introduction **

**11.2 Momentum Transfer Into and Out of a Control Volume **

**11.3 Momentum by in- and Outflowing Mass **

**11.4 Momentum by Shear Forces **

**11.5 Momentum by Volume Forces **

**11.6 Balance of Momentum **

**11.7 Navier-Stokes Equation for Incompressible Newtonian Fluids **

**11.8 Dimensional Analysis **

**11.9 Conclusion **

**Chapter 12: Conservation of Energy: The Energy Equation and the Thermodynamic Equation of State **

**12.1 Introduction **

**12.2 Energy Transfer by Convection **

**12.3 Heat Flow by Conduction **

**12.4 Work Flow by Boundary Forces **

**12.5 Heat Flow by Volume Effects **

**12.6 Work Flow by Volume Forces **

**12.7 Balance of Contributions **

**12.8 Thermodynamic Equation of State **

**12.9 Summary **

**Chapter 13: Continuity and Navier-Stokes Equations in Different Coordinate Systems **

**13.1 Cartesian Coordinates **

**13.2 Cylindrical Coordinates **

**13.3 Polar Coordinates **

**13.4 Spherical Coordinates **

**13.5 Summary **

**Chapter 14: The Circular Flow Tube **

**14.1 Introduction **

**14.2 Conservation of Mass: The Continuity Equation **

**14.3 Conservation of Momentum: The Navier-Stokes Equation **

**14.4 Euler Equation **

**14.5 Bernoulli Equation **

**14.6 Conservation of Energy **

**14.7 Deriving the Euler Equation by a Coordinate System Transformation **

**14.8 Summary **

**Chapter 15: Analytical Solutions to the Navier-Stokes Equation **

**15.1 Hydrostatics and Aerostatics **

**15.2 Shear Force-Driven Flow: Couette Flow **

**15.3 Gravity-Driven Flow **

**15.4 Pressure-Driven Flow: Poiseuille Flow **

**15.5 Summary **

**Chapter 16: Analytical Solutions to Poiseuille Flow Problems in Different Geometries **

**16.1 Elliptical and Circular Profiles **

**16.2 Planar Infinitesimally Extended Channel Cross-Sections **

**16.3 Flows in Circular Cross-Sections: Hagen-Poiseuille Flow **

**16.4 Flows in Rectangular Cross-Sections: Solution to Poisson and Laplace Equations **

**16.5 Summary **

**Chapter 17: Hydraulic Resistance **

**17.1 Introduction **

**17.2 Viscous Dissipation **

**17.3 Hydraulic Resistance of Important flow Channel Geometries **

**17.4 Simplification Approaches to Hydraulic Resistances **

**17.5 Equivalent Circuit Theory **

**17.6 Summary **

**Chapter 18: Analytical Solutions to Transient Flow Problems **

**18.1 Time-Dependent Transient Effects: Acceleration and Deceleration **

**18.2 Time-Dependent Couette Flow **

**18.3 Time-Dependent Hagen-Poiseuille Flow **

**18.4 Time-Dependent Flow in Rectangular Cross-Sections **

**18.5 Entrance Effects in Hagen-Poiseuille Flow **

**18.6 Summary **

**Chapter 19: Taylor-Aris Dispersion **

**19.1 Introduction **

**19.2 Dispersion **

**19.3 Convection-Diffusion Equation for Cylindrical Cross-Sections **

**19.4 Mass Concentration Function **

**19.5 Convection-Diffusion Equation **

**19.6 Solving for P **

**19.7 Solving for P **

**19.8 Validity of the Solution **

**19.9 Example **

**19.10 SUMMARY **

**III: Fluid Surface Effects **

**III: Fluid Surface Effects**

**Chapter 20: Surface Tension **

**20.1 Fluid Effects at Interfaces **

**20.2 Contact Angle Measurement **

**20.3 Surfactants **

**20.4 Marangoni Effect **

**20.5 Summary **

**Chapter 21: Capillarity **

**21.1 Capillary Pressure **

**21.2 Capillary Length **

**21.3 Meniscus Formation **

**21.4 Summary **

**Chapter 22: Measuring Surface Tension and Free Surface Energy **

**22.1 Introduction **

**22.2 Measuring the Surface Tension of Liquids **

**22.3 MEASURING THE FREE SURFACE ENERGY **

**22.4 Summary **

**Chapter 23: Plateau-Rayleigh Instability **

**23.1 Introduction **

**23.2 Stability Considerations **

**23.3 Fluid Jets **

**23.4 Instability **

**23.5 Standing Waves on a Fluid Jet **

**23.6 Characteristic Breakup Time **

**23.7 Applicability of the Plateau-Rayleigh Instability **

**23.8 Summary **

**Chapter 24: The Shape of Drops **

**24.1 Introduction **

**24.2 Derivation **

**24.3 Bashforth and Adams: Curvature Expressed as Z (X) **

**24.4 Brien, Ben, and Van den Brule: Curvature Expressed as Function of θ (Sessile Drops) **

**24.5 Del Río and Neumann: Curvature Expressed as Function of S (Pendant Drop) **

**24.6 Comparison With Experimental Data **

**24.7 Drops Inside of a Fluid **

**24.8 Historical Development of Drop-Shape Analysis **

**24.9 Summary **

**IV: Numerics **

**IV: Numerics**

**Chapter 25: Numerical Methods for Linear Systems of Equations **

**25.1 Introduction **

**25.2 Solutions to Linear Systems of Equations **

**25.3 Numerical Solutions to Linear Systems of Equations **

**25.4 Summary **

**Chapter 26: Numerical Solutions to Nonlinear Systems: Newton’s Method **

**26.1 Introduction **

**26.2 An Example: The Loran System **

**26.3 Newton’s Method **

**26.4 A Solver Implemented in Maple **

**26.5 Summary **

**Chapter 27: Numerical Methods for Solving Differential Equations **

**27.1 Introduction **

**27.2 Numerical Solutions to Ordinary Differential Equations **

**27.3 Numerical Solutions to Higher-Order Ordinary Differential Equations and Systems of Coupled Ordinary Differential Equations **

**27.4 Numerical Solutions to Systems of Ordinary Differential Equations with Boundary Conditions **

**27.5 Summary **

**Chapter 28: Numerical Solutions to the Navier-Stokes Equation **

**28.1 Introduction **

**28.2 Solution to the Poisson Equation **

**28.3 Solution to the Poisson Equation Using SOR **

**28.4 Summary **

**Chapter 29: Computational Fluid Dynamics **

**29.1 Introduction **

**29.2 Galerkin Method **

**29.3 Summary **

**Chapter 30: Finite Difference Method **

**30.1 Introduction **

**30.2 Advantages and Disadvantages **

**30.3 FDM in Microsoft Excel **

**30.4 Summary **

**Chapter 31: Finite Volume Method **

**31.1 Introduction **

**31.2 Conservative form Notation **

**31.3 Integral form of the Conservative Notation **

**31.4 Discretization **

**31.5 Function Reconstruction **

**31.6 Example: One-Dimensional Heat Equation **

**31.7 Two-Dimensional Problems of First Order in Time and Space **

**31.8 Two-Dimensional Problems of First Order in Time and Second-Order in Space **

**31.9 Summary **

**Chapter 32: Finite Element Method **

**32.1 Introduction **

**32.2 Discretization **

**32.3 Lagrangian Coordinates **

**32.4 Basis Functions **

**32.5 One-Dimensional Example: Flow in Infinitesimally Extended Channels **

**32.6 Two-Dimensional Example: Flow in Rectangular Channels **

**32.7 Summary **

**Chapter 33: Numerical Solutions to Transient Flow Problems **

**33.1 Introduction **

**33.2 A Numerical Solver for Two-dimensional Time-Dependent Flow Problems **

**33.3 A Numerical Solver for Two-Dimensional Entrance Flow Problems **

**33.4 Summary **

**Chapter 34: Numerical Solutions to Three-Dimensional Flow Problems **

**34.1 Introduction **

**34.2 Derivation **

**34.3 Implementation of a Stationary Flow Numerical Solver **

**34.4 Usage of the Numerical Solver **

**34.5 Summary **

**Bibliography **

**Index **

**Copyright **

William Andrew is an imprint of Elsevier

The Boulevard, Langford Lane, Kidlington, Oxford, OX5 1GB, United Kingdom

50 Hampshire Street, 5th Floor, Cambridge, MA 02139, United States

© 2017 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

No part of this publication may be reproduced or transmitted in any form or by any means, electronic or mechanical, including photocopying, recording, or any information storage and retrieval system, without permission in writing from the publisher. Details on how to seek permission, further information about the Publisher’s permissions policies and our arrangements with organizations such as the Copyright Clearance Center and the Copyright Licensing Agency, can be found at our website: **www.elsevier.com/permissions. **

This book and the individual contributions contained in it are protected under copyright by the Publisher (other than as may be noted herein).

**Notices **

Knowledge and best practice in this field are constantly changing. As new research and experience broaden our understanding, changes in research methods, professional practices, or medical treatment may become necessary.

Practitioners and researchers must always rely on their own experience and knowledge in evaluating and using any information, methods, compounds, or experiments described herein. In using such information or methods they should be mindful of their own safety and the safety of others, including parties for whom they have a professional responsibility.

To the fullest extent of the law, neither the Publisher nor the authors, contributors, or editors, assume any liability for any injury and/or damage to persons or property as a matter of products liability, negligence or otherwise, or from any use or operation of any methods, products, instructions, or ideas contained in the material herein.

**Library of Congress Cataloging-in-Publication Data **

A catalog record for this book is available from the Library of Congress

**British Library Cataloguing-in-Publication Data **

A catalogue record for this book is available from the British Library

ISBN: 978-1-4557-3141-1

For information on all William Andrew publications visit our website at **www.elsevier.com **

*Publisher: *Matthew Deans

*Acquisition Editor: *Simon Holt

*Editorial Project Manager: *Sabrina Webber

*Production Project Manager: *Lisa Jones

*Designer: *Greg Harris

Typeset by SPi Global, India

**Dedication **

For Anni, Ursula and Karl.

**Preface **

**Bastian E. Rapp **

Many people have not heard about microfluidics. This is somewhat astonishing as microfluidics surrounds us.

Microfluidics is the scientific disciplines that studies and employs the fluid physics at the micro- and nanometer scale. Fluids do interesting things when probed in such miniaturized systems. Capillarity is one of these effects we are familiar with. If you ever dipped a tissue paper in water and watched the water penetrate it you may have wondered what forces drive it. This is microfluidics. However, nowadays, there is an ample number of technical systems which make use of microfluidics ranging from analytical devices in biomedical engineering and the life sciences all the way to systems such as inkjet printers.

Microfluidics shares many of its fundamentals with classical fluid mechanics. Many students struggled with fluid mechanics during their studies because it is a discipline that requires a quite sound understanding of engineering mathematics. As a consequence, students (as well as established scientists) often take rather heuristic approaches when designing microfluidic systems. A system is characterized and optimized solely on experimental data. Very often, the findings are published omitting pretty much all fluid mechanical fundamentals and (very often) without any theoretical model. Equations are often copied from textbooks and simply applied without real understanding of what the equations actually describe. Whenever a more complex fluidic system is to be designed many researchers default to numerical software packages for providing an assessment of the system prior to device manufacturing. Very often, these extensive calculations are not necessary as there would have been a very simple theoretical model which would have been sufficient to understand the fluid mechanics of the system.

This book is intended for all students and researchers who want to understand the fundamentals of fluid mechanics. The book does not simply state the most important equations, it derives them. I believe that by providing the derivation of an equation, it will be significantly simpler to understand its meaning and its applicability. The reader will require very little prior knowledge when starting with this book. All mathematical concepts, tricks and methods used will be introduced and explained. The book will elucidate analytical techniques as well as numerical methods. It serves as a practical coursebook for those who want to deepen their knowledge, *e.g.*, of numerical methods as well as for those who are already very experienced in fluid mechanics but simply want to understand where a specific formula (such as, *e.g.*, the velocity distribution in a given channel cross-section) actually comes from.

The book comes with a number of worksheets written in *Maple*. These worksheets serve as templates to experiment with the equations derived and visually check which changes in the fluid mechanics are induced by changing certain variables. They can be used as basis for theoretical assessment of many microfluidic systems. This book contains many listings written in *C *which elucidate the numerical methods commonly used in fluid mechanics and microfluidics. In the supplementary you will also find a compiled DLL with exports functions that can be used to solve three-dimensional flow problems numerically. These functions are developed within this book together will all necessary numerical fundamentals. By following the book chapter-by-chapter you will gain a very detailed understanding of engineering mechanics, fluid mechanics and numerical methods.

Have fun exploring the fluid mechanics of microfluidics!

November 2016

**Acknowledgement **

**Bastian E. Rapp **

*Na gut Kollegen! *

*Justus Jonas *

As anyone who ever wrote a book will agree on, there are many people that help bringing the book to life.

The first and foremost thanks goes out to all the members of my group, the *NeptunLab *who supported me during the months it took to finish this book. My sincere thanks goes out to my mentor and long-time supporter Volker Saile for all his help and encouragement.

A warm thank you goes out to my dear friend and colleague Matthias Worgull who first encouraged me to write this book and then helped me sticking to this decision. I also want to thank Mohammad for all the *Flammkuchen *evenings and philosophical discussions.

I would also like to thank my publisher *Elsevier *and, especially, Simon Holt for his support and his patience despite the fact that (to quote Dave Barry) The deadline is months over and he has still not received what the publishing industry generally refers to as ’the book’

.

Most importantly, I want to thank my wife Emily and my family for their everlasting love and support. For my brother Holger, I have hidden something in this book which you are supposed to pick up at the very beginning because it will make your life so much easier at the very end.

**List of Figures **

1.1 Number of papers and patents published in the field of microfluidics since 1990 **5 **

2.1 The function *f *(*x*) = *x*² **12 **

3.1 A barrier lake **22 **

3.2 Graphical representation of differentials and derivatives **26 **

3.3 Boundary conditions and initial values **30 **

3.4 Important trigonometric functions **31 **

3.5 The right triangle **33 **

3.6 Bessel functions of first kind **36 **

3.7 Gamma function Γ (*x*) **38 **

3.8 Bessel functions of second kind **38 **

3.9 Approximation of the delta function **41 **

3.10 Soluble solid as an example for a delta function **41 **

3.11 Fourier series of the delta function **42 **

3.12 Shifted delta function **42 **

3.13 Fourier series of a two-dimensional delta function **44 **

3.14 Soluble solid as an example for a Heaviside function **45 **

3.15 Fourier series of the Heaviside function **46 **

3.16 Error and complementary error function **47 **

3.17 Curvature of a function **49 **

3.18 Derivation of the curvature **49 **

4.1 The Riemann zeta function **52 **

4.2 Taylor series expansion of the exponential function **55 **

4.3 Taylor series expansion in wrong interval **55 **

4.4 Taylor series expansion of the exponential function around *a* = *− *3 **56 **

4.5 Taylor series expansion of the sine function **57 **

4.6 Graphical explanation of the Fourier series weighting factors **63 **

4.7 Fourier series expansion of the square wave function **65 **

4.8 Fourier series expansion of the triangular-like function **66 **

4.9 Approximating a function by a Fourier sine series **68 **

4.10 Fourier sine series expansion of the constant function **70 **

4.11 One-dimensional Fourier expansion interpreted in two dimensions **71 **

4.12 Fourier expansion of a constant to a sine series in two dimensions **72 **

4.13 Fourier series expansion of the constant function **73 **

4.14 Fourier expansion of a constant to a cosine series in two dimensions **74 **

4.15 Fourier expansion of the exponential function **76 **

4.16 Exponential function expanded to a purely sine or cosine series **76 **

4.17 Example of a Fourier-Bessel series expansion **79 **

5.1 Normalized and unnormalized sinc function **84 **

6.1 Periodic table of the elements **94 **

6.2 Thermodynamic control volume **99 **

6.3 Maxwell speed distribution **107 **

6.4 Reversible and irreversible processes **116 **

6.5 Fourier’s law of heat conduction **125 **

6.6 Visualization of diffusion **130 **

6.7 Output of the digital diffusion experiment **131 **

6.8 Derivation of the conservation of mass **132 **

6.9 Diffusion times **134 **

7.1 Forming the cross product of two vectors **139 **

7.2 The theorems of Gauß, Stokes and Green **143 **

7.3 Control volume used for the Reynold’s transport theorem **145 **

7.4 Common coordinate systems **147 **

8.1 Derivation of the wave equation **190 **

8.2 Sine wave function as a solution to the transport equation **206 **

8.3 Pulse function as a solution to the transport equation **207 **

8.4 Two waves colliding **208 **

8.5 Analytical solution of the heat equation **211 **

8.6 Heat conduction examples **213 **

8.7 Half-wave sine function **223 **

8.8 Half-wave sine function with overtone **225 **

8.9 Limited point source diffusion **228 **

8.10 Limited plane diffusion **229 **

8.11 Limited point source diffusion with boundary condition **230 **

8.12 Laplace transform applied to solving the wave equation on the semi-infinite string **231 **

8.13 Solution to the one-dimensional wave equation found using the Laplace transform **233 **

8.14 Solution to the one-dimensional diffusion equation found using the Laplace transform **234 **

8.15 Limited point source diffusion in two dimensions **237 **

9.1 Shear stress on solids and liquids **244 **

9.2 Solids, liquids, and gases **244 **

9.3 Lennard-Jones potential given as a function of the distance of two rigid particles **245 **

9.4 Momentum transport in fluids **250 **

9.5 Thioxotropic and rheopexic fluids **251 **

9.6 Momentum transport in water **252 **

9.7 Measurement principles of viscosimeters **252 **

9.8 Setup of the Ostwald viscosimeter **254 **

9.9 Momentum transport and heat conduction **255 **

9.10 Slip and no-slip boundary conditions **256 **

10.1 Eulerian and Lagrangian frames of reference **266 **

10.2 Particle trajectories **268 **

10.3 Continuity equation **269 **

11.1 Momentum in-/outflux *via *mass flow **274 **

11.2 Momentum introduced by shear forces **275 **

11.3 Laminar and turbulent flow fields **286 **

11.4 Reynolds’ dye flow experiment **287 **

11.5 Visualization of the Froude number **288 **

12.1 Energy in- and outflux by convection **292 **

12.2 Energy in- and outflux by conduction **293 **

12.3 Work created by normal and shear forces **295 **

14.1 The fluid mechanics of the flow tube **309 **

15.1 Hydrostatics **315 **

15.2 Atmospheric pressure drop **317 **

15.3 Couette flow in a slit **317 **

15.4 Fluid flow under gravity **319 **

15.5 Flow profiles for gravity driven flow **320 **

15.6 Microfluidic channel with arbitrary cross-section **320 **

16.1 Poiseuille flow in elliptical cross-section **324 **

16.2 Calculated Poiseuille flow profiles for elliptical and circular channel cross-sections **326 **

16.3 Poiseuille flow in a planar infinitesimally extended channel **327 **

16.4 Velocity and shear force profile in a channel of 10 µm height **328 **

16.5 Velocity and shear force profile in a channel of 50 µm height **329 **

16.6 Hagen-Poiseuille flow in a circular tube **329 **

16.7 Calculated tube flow profiles **331 **

16.8 Calculated shear stress profiles **332 **

16.9 Alternative derivation of the Hagen-Poiseuille profile **333 **

16.10 Coordinate systems for Poiseuille flow in rectangular channels **337 **

16.11 Flow profiles in rectangular channel **342 **

16.12 Normalized flow profiles in rectangular channel cross-sections **344 **

16.13 Approximations for the flow profiles in rectangular channel cross-sections **345 **

16.14 Simplified normalized velocity profiles for rectangular cross-sections **346 **

16.15 Simplification errors for the flow rate **348 **

17.1 Viscous dissipation **356 **

17.2 Normalized hydraulic resistance in channels with elliptical and circular cross-sections calculated for water **360 **

17.3 Pressure drop in infinitesimally extended parallel channels calculated for water **360 **

17.4 Pressure drop in channels with rectangular and square cross-sections calculated for water **361 **

17.5 Correction factor *α *for elliptical cross-sections **364 **

17.6 Correction factor *α *for planar infinitesimally extended cross-sections **365 **

17.7 Correction factor *α *for rectangular cross-sections **367 **

17.8 Analogy between hydraulic and electrical resistance **369 **

18.1 Accelerating and decelerating flow **372 **

18.2 Fourier series expansion of the steady-state solution **376 **

18.3 Accelerating Couette flow **377 **

18.4 Decelerating Couette flow **378 **

18.5 Dimensionless accelerating and decelerating Couette flow **378 **

18.6 Dimensionless accelerating and decelerating Hagen-Poiseuille flow **384 **

18.7 Accelerating and decelerating Hagen-Poiseuille flow in a capillary with radius 1 mm **384 **

18.8 Dimensionless accelerating and decelerating flow velocity profiles in rectangular cross-sections **391 **

18.9 Accelerating and decelerating flow in a rectangular channel **392 **

18.10 Entrance flow **393 **

18.11 Normalized velocity profiles of the Hagen-Poiseuille entrance flow **398 **

19.1 Static plug in microfluidic channel **401 **

19.2 Moving plug in a microfluidic channel **402 **

19.3 Example of Taylor-Aris dispersion **409 **

19.4 Balanced rectangular function **411 **

19.5 Fourier series of the balanced rectangular pulse function *f*bal.rect. (*x*) **413 **

19.6 Effective diffusion *D*eff. as a function of the pressure drop **414 **

19.7 Taylor-Aris dispersion at a channel intersection with circular cross-sections **415 **

20.1 Surface tension **421 **

20.2 Estimating the free surface energy **423 **

20.3 Forces originating from surface tension **424 **

20.4 Photograph of a *gerridae *walking on a water surface **425 **

20.5 Contact angle **425 **

20.6 Young-Laplace equation **428 **

20.7 Minimal surfaces demonstrated at a soap ring **429 **

20.8 Fluid flow in a tapered channel **430 **

20.9 Advancing and receding contact angle **431 **

20.10 Principle structure of a surfactant **431 **

20.11 Bilayer and micelle formation **432 **

20.12 Langmuir-Blodgett films **433 **

20.13 Saponification reaction **434 **

20.14 Surfactants based on carboxylic acid **434 **

20.15 Surfactants based on sulfonic acid **435 **

20.16 Cationic surfactants **436 **

20.17 Zwitterionic surfactants **437 **

20.18 Non-ionic surfactants **439 **

20.19 Stabilization of suspensions **440 **

20.20 Marangoni effect **442 **

20.21 Demonstration of the Maragoni effect using a surfactant **443 **

21.1 Capillary pressure **445 **

21.2 Capillary heights **446 **

21.3 Meniscus formation **447 **

21.4 Calculated meniscus shape **451 **

22.1 Wilhelmy plate method **454 **

22.2 Drop-weight method **455 **

22.3 Determination of the surface tension using the *de*/*d s ***456 **

22.4 Maximum bubble pressure method **456 **

22.5 The spinning drop **457 **

22.6 Geometry of the spinning drop **457 **

22.7 Example of a Zisman extrapolation on a perfluorinated polyether acrylate surface **463 **

23.1 Falling fluid jet **468 **

23.2 Reduction of radius on a falling fluid jet **470 **

23.3 Plateau-Rayleigh instability on fluid jets **471 **

23.4 Dispersion relation for the Plateau-Rayleigh instability **475 **

23.5 Stationary perturbation on a fluid jet **475 **

23.6 Characteristic breakup time **476 **

23.7 Typical values for the Ohnesorge numbers **477 **

24.1 Cut view through a sessile drop **479 **

24.2 Contour of a sitting water drop **484 **

24.3 Numerically calculated drop contour of mercury drop on a glass surface **485 **

24.4 Height convergence of sessile drops **485 **

24.5 Difficulties using *θ *as independent variable **487 **

24.6 Accommodated contact angles at a curved capillary wall **488 **

24.7 Pendant drop of water **490 **

24.8 Pendant drop of mercury **491 **

24.9 Discontinuity of pendant drop **491 **

24.10 Comparison of the physical drop contour with the numerically derived drop contours **492 **

26.1 Example of a nonlinear system: the LORAN system **539 **

26.2 Intersection of the two equidistance lines **539 **

27.1 Visualization of the Euler method **550 **

27.2 Example of using Euler’s method to approximate a function **552 **

27.3 Numerical solution using Euler’s method **554 **

27.4 Numerical instability of the Euler method **556 **

27.5 Numerical stability of the backward Euler method **558 **

27.6 Example of nonlinear ODE solved by the backward Euler method **559 **

27.7 Numerical stability and precision of the Crank-Nicolson method **562 **

27.8 Comparison of the forward Euler and the second-order Adams-Bashforth method **567 **

27.9 Comparison of forward Euler, second-order Adams-Bashforth and second-order Adams-Moulton methods **571 **

27.10 Comparison of forward Euler, second-order Adams-Bashforth, second-order Adams-Moulton and fourth-order Runge-Kutta methods **575 **

27.11 Example of damped harmonic oscillation **576 **

27.12 Over-, under-, and critically-damped oscillation **579 **

27.13 Numerical output of the forward Euler and the fourth-order Runge-Kutta method **583 **

27.14 Example of the method of shooting applied to the ODE for the circular channel cross-section **588 **

27.15 Numerical output of the shooting method applied to the pendant drop ODE **590 **

28.1 4 *× *4 mesh for numerical calculation of the flow profile in rectangular channels **596 **

28.2 Numerical output of the solution to the Poisson equation **600 **

28.3 Numerical output of the solution to the Poisson equation using SOR **601 **

28.4 Numerical output of the SOR solver in *C ***605 **

28.5 Application of the numerical SOR solver in *C ***606 **

29.1 Example of the Galerkin method used to solve the differential equation for the Hagen-Poiseuille flow **615 **

29.2 Example of the Galerkin method used to solve the two-dimensional Poisson equation for the rectangular channel flow **618 **

29.3 The first four Chebyshev polynomials **620 **

30.1 Spreadsheet for solving the Poisson equation for pressure-driven flow (part 1) **625 **

30.2 Spreadsheet for solving the Poisson equation for pressure-driven flow (part 2) **627 **

30.3 Spreadsheet for solving the Poisson equation for pressure-driven flow (part 3) **628 **

30.4 Use of the spreadsheet to calculate nonzero boundary conditions **628 **

30.5 Use of the spreadsheet for fluid mechanical problems with Neumann boundary conditions using the Couette flow as example **629 **

30.6 Use of the spreadsheet to derive the flow profiles in arbitrarily shaped microfluidic channels **630 **

30.7 Use of the spreadsheet to solve the electric field distribution **631 **

31.1 Cells used in FVM **637 **

31.2 Function reconstruction schemes commonly used in FVM **638 **

31.3 Example of a finite volume method (FVM) using the one-dimensional heat equation **645 **

31.4 *Microsoft Excel *spreadsheet used to solve the one-dimensional heat equation using FVM **647 **

31.5 Numerical output of the *Microsoft Excel *spreadsheet used to solve the one-dimensional heat equation using FVM **648 **

31.6 Two-dimensional mesh for FVM **649 **

32.1 Mesh discretization used in FEM **655 **

32.2 Lagrangian coordinate system **656 **

32.3 Common approximation functions in FEM **659 **

32.4 Numerical solution of the flow profile in infinitesimally extended channels using finite element method (FEM) **666 **

32.5 Hat functions plotted using the values obtained from listing 32.1 **667 **

32.6 Mesh for solving the Poisson equation for a circular cross-section **669 **

32.7 Pyramid function supporting the value *ĝ*(1) in the two-dimensional mesh **670 **

32.8 Two-dimensional FEM applied to solving the Poisson equation on a circular cross-section **677 **

33.1 Numerical results for the accelerating flow in rectangular channel profiles **686 **

33.2 Numerical results for the accelerating flow in circular channel profiles **688 **

33.3 Numerical results for the space-transient flow in circular channel profiles during entry flow **693 **

33.4 Numerical results for the space-transient flow in circular channel profiles during entry flow taking convection into account **696 **

33.5 Comparison of numerical results for the space-transient flow in circular channel profiles during entry flow studying the effects of convection (part 1) **697 **

33.6 Comparison of numerical results for the space-transient flow in circular channel profiles during entry flow studying the effects of convection (part 2) **698 **

34.1 Usage of the three-dimensional solver for case 1: channel by-flow **728 **

34.2 Three-dimensional flow field for case 1: channel by-flow **730 **

34.3 Usage of the three-dimensional solver for case 2: channel through-flow **731 **

34.4 Three-dimensional flow field for case 2: channel through-flow **732 **

34.5 Usage of the three-dimensional solver for case 3: step expansion **733 **

34.6 Three-dimensional flow field for case 3: step expansion **734 **

34.7 Usage of the three-dimensional solver for case 4: flow around objects **736 **

34.8 Three-dimensional flow field for case 4: flow around objects **736 **

34.9 Usage of the three-dimensional solver for case 5: rectangular channel flow **738 **

34.10 Three-dimensional flow field for case 5: rectangular channel flow **738 **

34.11 Comparison of the flow profiles in a rectangular channel cross-section **739 **

34.12 Derived velocity and pressure profile along the *x*-axis for case 5 **739 **

34.13 Usage of the three-dimensional solver for case 6: double-fin channel flow **740 **

34.14 Numerical output for case 6 in the *xy*-plane **741 **

34.15 Numerical output for case 6 in the *xz*-plane **741 **

34.16 Three-dimensional flow field for case 6: double-fin channel flow **742 **

**List of Tables **

3.1 Roots of the Bessel functions *Jν *and *Yν ***40 **

4.1 Important series **52 **

4.2 Useful Taylor series **61 **

4.3 The first 16 Bernouilli numbers **62 **

5.1 Important Fourier transform pairs **83 **

5.2 Important Laplace transform pairs **88 **

6.1 Specific gas constants of commonly used gases **101 **

6.2 Gas molecule diameters of some commonly used gases **102 **

6.3 Standard formation enthalpy of some compounds **112 **

6.4 Standard entropy of some compounds **113 **

6.5 Standard enthalpy of vaporization of some compounds **115 **

6.6 Free standard enthalpy of formation of important compounds **119 **

6.7 Boiling points of some gases **124 **

6.8 Thermal conductivity of selected substances **126 **

6.9 A selection of diffusion constants **134 **

8.1 Common approaches for partial fraction expansion **201 **

8.2 Solutions to differential equations with characteristic polynomials **220 **

9.1 Some values for calculating the Lennard-Jones potential **246 **

9.2 Important dimensionless numbers **258 **

9.3 Some examples for Prandtl values **260 **

9.4 A selection of Schmidt and Lewis values **260 **

17.1 Hydraulic resistance of most important geometries **359 **

17.2 Compactness and correction factor values for elliptical cross-sections **364 **

17.3 Compactness and correction factor values for planar infinitesimally extended cross-sections **366 **

17.4 Compactness and correction factor values for rectangular cross-sections **366 **

20.1 Free surface energy values of the elements **422 **

20.2 Surface tension of commonly used liquids **423 **

22.1 Liquids used for determining free surface energies **461 **

22.2 Critical surface tension values for polymers **464 **

22.3 Critical surface tension values for modified surfaces **464 **

26.1 Values obtained from the solver implementing Newton’s method **546 **

26.2 Second set of values obtained from the solver implementing Newton’s method (instable) **547 **

27.1 Computational output of the Euler method **551 **

27.2 Computational results of the Euler method **554 **

27.3 Family of the Adams-Moulton formulae **565 **

27.4 Comparison of computational results of forward Euler method, second-order Adams-Moulton, second-order Adams-Bashforth, and fourth-order Runge-Kutta methods **567 **

27.5 Family of the Adams-Moulton formulae **570 **

27.6 Family of the Runge-Kutta formulae **573 **

32.1 Index matrix used in FEM **656 **

**List of Listings **

2.1 The file *Core.txt ***15 **

2.2 The file *CoreFunctions.txt ***18 **

4.1 Listing for Taylor series expansion **57 **

4.2 Listing for Fourier series expansion of periodic functions **67 **

4.3 Listing for Fourier series expansion of nonperiodic functions **75 **

6.1 Listing for the digital diffusion experiment **129 **

8.1 Listing for the wave equation **224 **

16.1 Listing for the profile of elliptical Poiseuille flows **325 **

16.2 Listing for the mechanics of the tube flow **330 **

16.3 Listing for calculating flow profiles in rectangular channels **343 **

18.1 Listing for the time-dependent Couette flow **379 **

18.2 Listing for the time-dependent Hagen-Poiseuille flow **385 **

18.3 Listing for the time-dependent flow in rectangular cross-sections **392 **

19.1 Listing for Taylor-Aris dispersion **415 **

24.1 Listing for the contour of a sessile drop **483 **

24.2 Listing for the contour of a pendant drop **489 **

25.1 Listing for the Jacobi method **511 **

25.2 Listing for the Gauß-Seidel method **513 **

25.3 Listing for the successive over-relaxation method **515 **

25.4 Listing for the successive over-relaxation method with pivoting **516 **

25.5 Listing for LU-decomposition **522 **

25.6 Listing for LU-substitution without pivoting **524 **

25.7 Listing for LU-decomposition with pivoting **525 **

25.8 Listing for LU-substitution with pivoting **526 **

25.9 Listing for the sequential dense LU-decomposition **529 **

25.10 Listing for the sequential dense LU-decomposition with pivoting **530 **

25.11 Listing for sequential dense LU-substitution with pivoting **531 **

25.12 Listing for solving a linear system of equations using the Thomas algorithm **533 **

26.1 Listing for matrix/vector multiplication **543 **

26.2 Listing for matrix evaluation **543 **

26.3 Listing for vector evaluation **544 **

26.4 Listing for Newton’s method for solving nonlinear systems of equations **545 **

26.5 Listing for applying the Newton’s method solver **546 **

27.1 Listing for Euler’s method for solving ODEs **553 **

27.2 Listing for the backward Euler method for solving ODEs **557 **

27.3 Listing for the Crank-Nicolson method for solving ODEs **561 **

27.4 Listing for the Adams-Bashforth method for solving ODEs **567 **

27.5 Listing for the Adams-Moulton method for solving ODEs **571 **

27.6 Listing for the fourth order Runge-Kutta method for solving ODEs **574 **

27.7 Listing for the Euler method applied to solving higher-order ODEs and systems of ODEs **582 **

27.8 Listing for the fourth-order Runge-Kutta method applied to solving higher-order ODEs and systems of ODEs **584 **

27.9 Listing for application examples of the fourth-order Runge-Kutta method applied to solving higher-order ODEs and systems of ODEs **587 **

27.10 Listing for application examples of the fourth-order Runge-Kutta method applied to solving the pendant drop ODE **589 **

28.1 Listing for solving a Poisson equation numerically (part 1) **598 **

28.2 Listing for solving a Poisson equation numerically (part 2) **599 **

28.3 Listing for solving a Poisson equation numerically (part 3) **600 **

28.4 Listing for solving a Poisson equation numerically using SOR in *C ***602 **

28.5 Listing for solving a Poisson equation numerically (part 4) **604 **

28.6 Listing for solving a Poisson equation numerically (part 5) **606 **

29.1 Listing for the Galerkin method (part 1) **614 **

29.2 Listing for the adapted Galerkin method (part 2) **616 **

32.1 Listing for solving a linear system of equations using the Thomas algorithm **666 **

32.2 Mesh definition for two-dimensional FEM **673 **

32.3 Helper functions for two-dimensional FEM **674 **

32.4 Function Initialize required for two-dimensional FEM **674 **

32.5 Single triangle contribution for two-dimensional FEM **676 **

32.6 Mesh processing for two-dimensional FEM **676 **

32.7 Solving the mesh in two-dimensional FEM **677 **

32.8 Applying two-dimensional FEM using the implemented functions **677 **

33.1 Listing for preparing a rectangular grid **682 **

33.2 Listing for preparing a circular grid **683 **

33.3 Listing for solving time-dependent flow problems **683 **

33.4 Listing for solving transient flow problems numerically (part 1) **685 **

33.5 Listing for solving transient flow problems numerically (part 2) **687 **

33.6 Listing for solving a space-transient flow problem while neglecting convection **690 **

33.7 Listing for solving transient flow problems numerically (part 3) **690 **

33.8 Listing for solving a space-transient flow problem taking convection into account **691 **

33.9 Listing for solving transient flow problems numerically (part 4) **692 **

33.10 Listing for solving transient flow problems numerically (part 5) **698 **

34.1 Helper structures used for the implementation of the three-dimensional solver **718 **

34.2 Body of the three-dimensional solver implementation **720 **

34.3 The macro ABS of the three-dimensional solver implementation **720 **

34.4 Block 1 of the three-dimensional solver implementation **722 **

34.5 Block 2 of the three-dimensional solver implementation **722 **

34.6 Macro UpdateFlowVariableCorrectIndex of the three-dimensional solver implementation **723 **

34.7 Macros UpdateFlowVariableValuesAll and UpdateFlowVariableValuesSingle of the three-dimensional solver implementation **723 **

34.8 Macros UpdateFlowVariableValuesDifferenceAll and UpdateFlowVariableValuesDifference of the three-dimensional solver implementation **725 **

34.9 Block 3 of the three-dimensional solver implementation **726 **

34.10 Block 4 of the three-dimensional solver implementation **726 **

34.11 The macros UpdateFlowVariableDoNeumann and UpdateFlowVariableDoNeumannSingle of the three-dimensional solver implementation **726 **

34.12 *Maple *worksheet for solving the flow cases using the three-dimensional solver **727 **

34.13 *Maple *worksheet for solving case 1 using the three-dimensional solver **729 **

34.14 *Maple *worksheet for solving case 2 using the three-dimensional solver **731 **

34.15 *Maple *worksheet for solving case 3 using the three-dimensional solver **733 **

34.16 *Maple *worksheet for solving case 4 using the three-dimensional solver **735 **

34.17 *Maple *worksheet for solving case 5 using the three-dimensional solver **737 **

34.18 *Maple *worksheet for solving case 6 using the three-dimensional solver **740 **

**List of Acronyms **

**List of Abbreviations **

**List of Symbols **

**List of Constants **

**List of Chemicals **

**Conversions **

**I **

Fundamentals

**Chapter 1 **

**Introduction **

**1.1 What is Microfluidics? **

Microfluidics is the science of fluids on the micro- and nanometer scale. Academically, it is a subdiscipline of fluid mechanics, as the fundamental equations describing the physics of fluids at larger length scales are identical to the equations underlying microfluidics. However, compared to classical fluid mechanics, the length scales in microfluidic systems are significantly smaller. There is no clear prerequisite as to when a system can be considered as being microfluidic. In general, if one of the characteristic length scales, *e.g., *the height or width of a fluid system features dimensions in the micrometer range or below, such a system can be considered a microfluidic system. At these length scales, the fluid physics is different from what we are used to seeing in larger scale systems. As an example, microfluidic flows are usually strictly laminar. Laminar flow is rare in macroscopic systems. At an example, consider a river or even a seashore. The water in these systems usually flows under turbulent flow conditions. This is something we rarely see in microfluidic systems.

Another important aspect of microfluidic flows is effects of surface tension. Surface tension is usually an effect not very important for macroscopic fluidic systems. However, in microfluidics, gravitational forces are usually negligible due to the fact that the amount of liquids used is so small. Surface tension becomes predominant, *e.g., *in systems which transport liquids in the form of single droplets on open surfaces or within closed channels.

As we will see, the fundamental laws of fluid mechanics are valid for microfluidics as well. However, due to the fact that effects such as fluid turbulence, gravity, and the like can often be neglected, the equations describing microfluidic systems are often significantly simplified versions of the equations of fluid physics. This makes microfluidic an attractive discipline for the study of the properties and dynamics of fluid flow where effects, such as, diffusion, can be studied at very high resolution.

**1.2 A Brief History of Microfluidics **

The development of microfluidics is very closely related to the history of classical microstructure technology. The latter is mainly based on the huge scientific and commercial success of microelectronics that revolutionized electrical engineering and electronics. The term microelectromechanical system (MEMS) was originally defined at the beginning of the 1980s and describes systems that feature both electrically and mechanically actuated or interrogated components. The term was later complemented by the aspect of optical component integration, for which the term microoptoelectromechanical system (MOEMS) was introduced. The first real systems for which the term MEMS is justified were presented by Petersen *et al. *in 1982 [**1] and later by Chen et al. [2] in 1984. These systems consisted mainly of a mechanically movable mass manufactured alongside electronic circuitry on a chip which was used to measure acceleration. It seems like a straightforward implementation of a very basic MEMS system: the electronic components could be produced in complementary metal oxide semiconductor (CMOS) technology which also allowed the creation of bulk mechanical structures such as the acceleratable masses required for these accelerometers. The mass could be made movable by means of sacrificial layers that were etched during manufacturing. Interrogating the position of this mass by means of the electronic circuitry allowed for the creation of the first MEMS systems. As of today, the most commonly used material for semiconductors is still silicon for which decades of extensive research and process optimization have resulted in highly scalable and reproducible processes. The early MEMS systems have profited extensively from this experience which explains why silicon (and its close relative, glass) are still frequently used materials. This also explains the fact that the early microfluidic systems were almost exclusively produced in silicon by means of photolithographically structured resist layers serving as a mask for wet etching, both of which were among the most frequently used processes in MEMS technology at that time. How closely related microfluidic is to MEMS can be seen when looking at early reviews of microfluidic systems and processing techniques, e.g., the review by Gravesen et al. written in 1993 [3]. The manufacturing techniques used were almost exclusively established MEMS processes such as lithography and wet or dry etching. **

In contrast to the early MEMS accelerometers, the first microfluidic systems predicted the variety that would later become one of the most important characteristics of the community. Three early contributions are worth noting here.

**1.2.1 Inkjet Printing **

This has and still is one of the most important commercial applications in the field of microfluidics. The rapid and precise deposition of small amounts of liquids (such as solutions or inks) has been and most likely will always be one of the key advantages and applications in the field of microfluidics. The early work toward these systems has mainly been driven by *IBM *and the first contributions were presented by Bassous *et al. *in 1977 [**4]. Judging from the commercial success, inkjet printing ranks among the most prominent application examples for microfluidics. Millions of end-user inkjet printers are sold each year, each of which features a (mostly) silicon printing head that is essentially a microfluidic spotting device. **

**1.2.2 Integrated Circuit Technology **

Given the fact that microfluidics can historically be considered as a subdiscipline of MEMS technology, it seems straightforward that early applications would fall into the regime of microelectronics. One of the most important problems to be solved for high-performance integrated circuits (IC) systems was (and still is) heat dissipation and transfer out of the circuit in order to prevent overheating. Using fluids for heat transport seems a logical consequence and as of today, heat pipes and similar systems are still used for processor cooling on high-end graphic cards or high-performance central processing unit (CPU) chips. Tuckerman and Pease presented such systems in 1981, describing a heat sink which was to be used for large-scale IC designs [**5]. This heat sink was connected to a microfluidic channel system that was integrated next to the principle heat sources on the chip. This channel system could be purged with a coolant that would transport the heat out of the system for dissipation in the heat sink. **

Today microfluidics in IC technology is limited to niche applications. However, for high performance circuits, microfluidic heat transfer is still a viable option.

**1.2.3 Analytical Applications **

As of today, this class of applications may be considered one of the most important for the development of microfluidics as a scientific discipline. The immense advantages that microfluidics offers over classical macroscopic fluid handling have been the most important driving factor for the development of a wide set of applications that go beyond mere technological development. It has made microfluidics attractive for other scientific disciplines such as chemistry and biochemistry, reaching all the way up to biomedical devices and applications. The first analytical applications of note were presented by Terry *et al. *in 1979 [**6]. This work described an integrated gas chromatography manufactured in silicon. The system consisted of two bonded silicon wafers that integrated monolithic microvalves and a detector implemented in the form of an anemometric heat conductivity detector. The system was able to clearly detect the distinct peaks from the individual components from a mixture consisting of nitrogen gas, n-pentane, and n-hexane. The authors stated in the summary that The application of IC processing techniques was necessary to reduce the size of the sensor from that of a bulky laboratory instrument to a pocket-sized package, while closely retaining the performance of a larger device [...] This miniature analysis system should find wide application in a number of fields including implanted biological monitors, portable air contaminant analyzers, and unmanned planetary probes. [6] (p. 1886). **

Looking back from today, it has to be stated that this system was way ahead of its time as the paper went widely unnoticed. It took almost a decade until the beginning of the 1990s, when the field experienced a revival by the work of Manz *et al. *which put forward the concept of miniaturized total analysis systems (μTAS) [**7]. The concept was first suggested and introduced by Widmer in 1983. In one of the most seminal papers for the development of microfluidics he predicted that [...] such sophisticated, integrated [microfluidic] systems, characterized by their exchangeable modular set-up, will have widespread future applications in industry. They will be part of the analytical impact which is changing the face of the chemical and allied industries. [8] (p. 10). **

**1.2.4 Microfiuidics Today **

Today, the microfluidic community is a diverse scientific amalgamation of various disciplines ranging from physics, engineering, material sciences, all the way to biology, biochemistry, and even information technology. Since 1990 the number of papers and patents on microfluidics has increased steadily as the community has grown (see **Fig. 1.1). There are several noteworthy annual meetings of the community such as the International Conference on Miniaturized Systems for Chemistry and Life Sciences (μTAS) and the Microfluidics, BioMEMS, and Medical Microsystems. **

**Fig. 1.1 ***Number of journal papers and patents published in the field of microfluidics since 1990. The number of journal papers was determined using Web of Science ( ***webofknowledge.com , papers containing the term **

microfluidicas topic). The number of patents published was determined using Espacenet ( worldwide.espacenet.com , patents containing the term

microfluidicin title or summary). Data acquired on January 25 th , 2015.

**1.3 Commercial Aspects **

There have been many studies and reports about the market potential and the most important potential applications for microfluidics. One of the most commonly cited sources of the market potential of MEMS is published annually by *Yole Développement *(**www.yole.fr). The most recent report, dating from 2015, estimates the global MEMS market to double between 2014 and 2020, reaching a worldwide market volume of 22 000MUS$. The share of microfluidic devices is estimated to be around a fifth of this volume [9]. **

Because the use of microfluidics in inkjet printers has been such a commercial success, the community has often sought the killer application

, *i.e., *a device mainly based on microfluidic concepts and principles that would yield highly selling products. However, until now, such an application has not been found. Despite this, microfluidics is considered to be the key discipline for the development of laboratory test instruments, as well as home care diagnostics. The reason why the technology has not yet found the widespread applications for which it is doubtlessly suitable is difficult to find. This has been noted repeatedly in the literature, see for example, the recent comment by Whitesides [**10]. An excellent series of articles has been published over the last two years by Becker, who focused on commercialization aspects of microfluidic devices and tried to elaborate why there are still so few successfully commercialized microfluidic products. The series discusses the question of whether or not there actually is a killer application [11, 12], the factors influencing the manufacturing cost and therefore the industrial producibility of a device [13], the importance of intellectual property [14], and the need for (or the lack) of standardization [15]. It also includes a detailed discussion of the industrial requirements for successful device commercialization [16, 17]. However microfluidics promises such immense advantages, e.g., low sample volume consumption and fast chemical reactions due to short diffusion lengths, strictly laminar flow, etc. that it is one of the most promising evolving technological fields. **

**1.4 About This Book **

The aim of this book is to provide a general and easy-to-follow introduction to the fundamentals and the mathematics of microfluidics. One of the main advantages of microfluidics is the fact that it is comparatively easy to derive theoretical models for experimental data. However, microfluidics is still fluid physics. Thus, students eager to learn about the fundamentals of microfluidics will very quickly find themselves faced with differential equations, vector analysis, thermodynamics, and engineering mathematics. I have found many students struggling with this wide choice of academic disciplines. Some students may even discover that their respective curriculum did not include sufficiently detailed courses on fluid physics, engineering mathematics, or thermodynamics. Thus, some of the most important fundamental concepts of microfluidics will remain a black box for them.

This book intends to cover microfluidics as a multi-disciplinary topic. It contains large introductory sections which will reintroduce and revise most concepts required for understanding the fluid mechanics of microfluidics. The book takes time deriving and explaining the equations. It is not the intention to simply list the most important ones. There are excellent textbooks in the literature which summarize the most important equations of microfluidics and which may serve as a quick lookup if a specific equation is sought. This book is different. It will not only list the equations, it will derive them. It will explain them. And it will show practical examples using the Algebra package *Maple *which helps in visualizing the equations and their significance. Some of the equations can even be solved and displayed with *Microsoft Excel*. As it turns out, this is surprisingly easy.

The book comes with a set of *Maple *worksheets which can be used to experiment with the equations. It will allow students and researchers to quickly adapt the equations to a specific application. Examples include diffusion, dispersion, pressure drop, velocity distribution, and similar effects.

The book is intended for a broad readership. It will start explaining all fundamental concepts required to understand later chapters. You only remember Fourier or Taylor series expansion from the early days of your study? You have never heard of Laplace transforms, operators, or vector calculus? You have never attended a lecture on thermodynamics? Do not worry – this is not a prerequisite for understanding this book. This book will start from scratch, even allowing students who may have had little to no engineering mathematics in their curriculum to understand the mathematical tools required for solving the seemingly complex equations of microfluidics. As we will see, microfluidics is not very complex and, after a proper introduction, most of the tools can be understood and applied quite readily.

**1.5 Structure of This Book **

This book is divided into