Theoretical and experimental study of microchannel blockage phenomena

Eiichiro Yamaguchi, Ronald J. Adrian

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contribution

1 Scopus citations


Microchannel blockage phenomena by hard, spherical particles have been investigated experimentally and theoretically. The study was performed over a range of particle-to-channel diameter ratios of 0.14 < R < 0.65. Two mechanisms have been investigated: orthokinetic flocculation and hydrokinetic arching. Arching appears to be the main mechanism for large, hard particles. In the absence of Brownian motion and inter-particle repulsive forces, other than simple Hertzian contact force, the blockage phenomenon is described by three non-dimensional parameters, N, R and β. The mean total number of particles in the channel having length L is N. Ratio of a diameter of particle (d p) and a diameter of channel (D) is R. Blockage efficiency factor β is determined experimentally. The data shows that a critical value N c exists as a function of R. N > N c implies high likelihood of blockage; if N < N c, blockages were never observed. The critical number decreases dramatically with increasing R. Blockages can occur at surprisingly low values of the volume concentration (φ). The experimental results matches well with the theory for the combinations of straight glass capillary, 76<D<156μm, 100mm-length, and spherical polymer particle, 22>d p<48μm.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationInternational Conference on Microchannels and Minichannels
EditorsS.G. Kandlikar
Number of pages7
StatePublished - Dec 1 2003
Externally publishedYes
EventFirst International Conference on Microchannels and Minichannels - Rochester, NY, United States
Duration: Apr 24 2003Apr 25 2003

Publication series

NameInternational Conference on Microchannels and Minichannels


OtherFirst International Conference on Microchannels and Minichannels
Country/TerritoryUnited States
CityRochester, NY

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Engineering


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