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Three-Dimensional Electrokinetic Focusing in a Planar Microstructure

[+] Author Affiliations
Jeffrey T. Coleman, Bob M. Lansdorp, David Sinton

University of Victoria

Paper No. IMECE2005-81834, pp. 323-327; 5 pages
  • ASME 2005 International Mechanical Engineering Congress and Exposition
  • Fluids Engineering
  • Orlando, Florida, USA, November 5 – 11, 2005
  • Conference Sponsors: Fluids Engineering Division
  • ISBN: 0-7918-4219-3 | eISBN: 0-7918-3769-6
  • Copyright © 2005 by ASME


Hydrodynamic focusing is commonly employed to reduce the cross-sectional area of a microfluidic sample stream. Two-dimensional focusing is achieved by combining a central sample stream with a buffer sheathing flow on adjacent sides of a standard microfluidic cross chip. This method of on-chip hydrodynamic focusing is the most common, perhaps due to the relative ease and popularity of planar microfluidic chip fabrication methods. The application of two-dimensional focusing to on-chip flow cytometry is limited for two reasons: Firstly, the degree of focusing obtained is limited by the microchannel depth. Secondly, many biological analytes adhere to channel walls mitigating the optical measurements. Three-dimensional focusing can both increase the focus intensity, and minimize interaction between the analyte stream and the channel walls in the viewed region. In this work, a new method is presented for obtaining three-dimensional hydrodynamic focusing on a planar microfluidic geometry using strategically placed surface charge patches. Numerical simulations are employed to show the concentration profiles resulting from the local flow circulations induced by the surface patches in an electrokinetically-driven flow.

Copyright © 2005 by ASME



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