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Controlled Cavitation and Sonoporation in Microfluidics

[+] Author Affiliations
Claus-Dieter Ohl, Séverine Le Gac, Ed Zwaan, Albert van den Berg

University of Twente, Enschede, The Netherlands

Kinko Tsuji

Shimadzu Europe GmbH, Duisburg, Germany

Paper No. IMECE2007-41102, pp. 183-185; 3 pages
  • ASME 2007 International Mechanical Engineering Congress and Exposition
  • Volume 2: Biomedical and Biotechnology Engineering
  • Seattle, Washington, USA, November 11–15, 2007
  • Conference Sponsors: ASME
  • ISBN: 0-7918-4296-7 | eISBN: 0-7918-3812-9
  • Copyright © 2007 by ASME


Cavitation – the growth and collapse of mostly empty bubbles — is commonly attributed to large scale or very rapid flows, e.g. at ship propellors or at fuel injection nozzles. Cavitation is very aggressive to materials and one reason is its ability to focus fluid flows to very small scales; the bubbles concentrate the energy from the fluid during their shrinkage. Only recently the attention from largely free cavitation bubbles has shifted towards the study of more confined bubbles [1–5]. Here we report on an experiment to exploit cavitation in microfluidic systems or so called lab-on-a-chip devices for flow handling and biological cell manipulation. In microfluidics generally due to the small scales low Reynolds number flows are observed. Yet, cavitation bubble-induced flows allow to reach a high Reynolds number regime also on these small scales. By exploiting this rarely studied flow regime new techniques for liquid and cell handling become feasible. Here, we will report first on the effect of a channel wall on the bubble dynamics and then present an application for cell handling and membrane poration.

Copyright © 2007 by ASME



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