Math. Model. Nat. Phenom.
Volume 16, 2021
Control of instabilities and patterns in extended systems
|Number of page(s)||16|
|Published online||31 August 2021|
Mixing control in a continuous-flow microreactor using electro-osmotic flow
Department of Applied Physics, Perm National Research Polytechnic University,
2 Department of Oil and Gas Technologies, Perm National Research Polytechnic University, 614990 Perm, Russia.
* Corresponding author: email@example.com
Accepted: 31 July 2021
In recent years, pharmaceutical production has been stimulating the gradual miniaturization of continuous-flow chemical reactors. This process eventually resulted in the emergence of a new generation of microreactors. The advantages of these new reactor types are the flexible production that allows us to quickly reconfigure the scheme, small reactant quantities used for the synthesis, the control of the main reaction parameters with high accuracy. Nevertheless, a decrease in the thickness of the channels where the species contact and react forces us to search for new non-mechanical mechanisms for mixing. This problem is relevant for the slow reaction occurring in a slot where diffusion alone cannot provide mixing at reasonable distances from the entrance. It is also true for the fast reaction that takes place in a frontal manner. In this work, we consider the efficiency of mixing the reactants induced by electro-osmotic flow in a Hele-Shaw configuration with non-uniform zeta potential distribution. As a test reaction, we take the neutralization reaction with simple albeit non-linear kinetics. The reaction occurs between two miscible solutions, which are initially separated in space and come into contact in a continuous-flow microreactor. The reaction proceeds frontally, which prevents the efficient mixing of the reactants due to diffusion. Using direct numerical simulations of 2D and 3D flows, we demonstrate that the zeta potential applied to boundaries can effectively control the mixing rate of fluids by lengthening the front of the reaction. This approach makes it possible to increase the yield of the reaction product.
Mathematics Subject Classification: 76D55
Key words: Electro-osmotic flow (EOF) / Hele-Shaw cell / continuous-flow microreactors
© The authors. Published by EDP Sciences, 2021
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