Droplet Formation by Confined Liquid Threads inside Microchannels

Cees J.M. van Rijn*, Willem G.N. van Heugten

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

2 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

A confined liquid thread can form monodisperse droplets near the exit of a microchannel, provided the continuous phase is able to enter the microchannel. A general model that accurately predicts the droplet size including the breakup position inside the microchannel is presented and is verified with experimental observations; breakup occurs as long as the capillary number (Ca) of the liquid thread is below a critical capillary number (Cacr); for cylindrical microchannels, it is derived that Cacr = 1/16. Below Cacr, the formed droplets at the exit of the microchannel have a diameter approximately two times the diameter of the liquid thread; around and above Cacr, the liquid thread remains stable and the formed droplets grow infinitely large. The presented controlled droplet generation method is a useful tool for producing monodisperse emulsions and has great potential for the food and pharmaceutical industry.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)10035-10040
JournalLangmuir
Volume33
Issue number38
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 26 Sep 2017

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Cite this

van Rijn, Cees J.M. ; van Heugten, Willem G.N. / Droplet Formation by Confined Liquid Threads inside Microchannels. In: Langmuir. 2017 ; Vol. 33, No. 38. pp. 10035-10040.
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Droplet Formation by Confined Liquid Threads inside Microchannels. / van Rijn, Cees J.M.; van Heugten, Willem G.N.

In: Langmuir, Vol. 33, No. 38, 26.09.2017, p. 10035-10040.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

TY - JOUR

T1 - Droplet Formation by Confined Liquid Threads inside Microchannels

AU - van Rijn, Cees J.M.

AU - van Heugten, Willem G.N.

PY - 2017/9/26

Y1 - 2017/9/26

N2 - A confined liquid thread can form monodisperse droplets near the exit of a microchannel, provided the continuous phase is able to enter the microchannel. A general model that accurately predicts the droplet size including the breakup position inside the microchannel is presented and is verified with experimental observations; breakup occurs as long as the capillary number (Ca) of the liquid thread is below a critical capillary number (Cacr); for cylindrical microchannels, it is derived that Cacr = 1/16. Below Cacr, the formed droplets at the exit of the microchannel have a diameter approximately two times the diameter of the liquid thread; around and above Cacr, the liquid thread remains stable and the formed droplets grow infinitely large. The presented controlled droplet generation method is a useful tool for producing monodisperse emulsions and has great potential for the food and pharmaceutical industry.

AB - A confined liquid thread can form monodisperse droplets near the exit of a microchannel, provided the continuous phase is able to enter the microchannel. A general model that accurately predicts the droplet size including the breakup position inside the microchannel is presented and is verified with experimental observations; breakup occurs as long as the capillary number (Ca) of the liquid thread is below a critical capillary number (Cacr); for cylindrical microchannels, it is derived that Cacr = 1/16. Below Cacr, the formed droplets at the exit of the microchannel have a diameter approximately two times the diameter of the liquid thread; around and above Cacr, the liquid thread remains stable and the formed droplets grow infinitely large. The presented controlled droplet generation method is a useful tool for producing monodisperse emulsions and has great potential for the food and pharmaceutical industry.

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