Subsonic gas flow in a straight and uniform microchannel

Yitshak Zohar, Sylvanus Yuk Kwan Lee, Wing Yin Lee, Linan Jiang, Pin Tong

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

126 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

A nonlinear equation based on the hydrodynamic equations is solved analytically using perturbation expansions to calculate the flow field of a steady isothermal, compressible and laminar gas flow in either a circular or a planar microchannel. The solution takes into account slip-flow effects explicitly by utilizing the classical velocity-slip boundary condition, assuming the gas properties are known. Consistent expansions provide not only the cross-stream but also the streamwise evolution of the various flow parameters of interest, such as pressure, density and Mach number. The slip-flow effect enters the solution explicity as a zero-order correction comparable to, though smaller than, the compressible effect. The theoretical calculations are verified in an experimental study of pressure-driven gas flow in a long microchannel of sub-micron height. Standard micromachining techniques were utilized to fabricate the microchannel, with integral pressure microsensors based on the piezoresistivity principle of operation. The integrated microsystem allows accurate measurements of mass flow rates and pressure distributions along the microchannel. Nitrogen, helium and argon were used as the working fluids forced through the microchannel. The experimental results support the theoretical calculations in finding that acceleration and non-parabolic velocity profile effects were found to be negligible. A detailed error analysis is also carried out in an attempt to expose the challenges in conducting accurate measurements in microsystems.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)125-151
Number of pages27
JournalJournal of Fluid Mechanics
Issue number472
DOIs
StatePublished - Dec 10 2002
Externally publishedYes

Fingerprint

microchannels
Microchannels
gas flow
Flow of gases
slip flow
Microsystems
Microsensors
expansion
working fluids
hydrodynamic equations
mass flow rate
Micromachining
error analysis
micromachining
pressure distribution
Nonlinear equations
Mach number
Pressure distribution
Error analysis
nonlinear equations

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Mechanics of Materials
  • Computational Mechanics
  • Physics and Astronomy(all)
  • Condensed Matter Physics

Cite this

Subsonic gas flow in a straight and uniform microchannel. / Zohar, Yitshak; Lee, Sylvanus Yuk Kwan; Lee, Wing Yin; Jiang, Linan; Tong, Pin.

In: Journal of Fluid Mechanics, No. 472, 10.12.2002, p. 125-151.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Zohar, Yitshak ; Lee, Sylvanus Yuk Kwan ; Lee, Wing Yin ; Jiang, Linan ; Tong, Pin. / Subsonic gas flow in a straight and uniform microchannel. In: Journal of Fluid Mechanics. 2002 ; No. 472. pp. 125-151.
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