Fluidic ratchet based on Marangoni-Bénard convection

Abraham D. Stroock, Rustem F. Ismagilov, Howard A. Stone, George M. Whitesides

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

38 Scopus citations


A mean flow is observed experimentally in a layer of fluid undergoing Marangoni-Bénard convection over a heated substrate that presents a pattern of asymmetrical grooves. The direction of the mean flow is a function of the temperature difference across the layer and of the thickness of the layer; the direction can be controlled by changing these parameters. This system acts as a fluidic ratchet: the local structure of the thermally driven convection interacts with the asymmetry of the local topographical pattern and causes a net, global flow in the fluid. This fluidic ratchet may be useful in handling fluids on macroscopic and microscopic scales.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)4358-4362
Number of pages5
Issue number10
StatePublished - May 13 2003
Externally publishedYes

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • General Materials Science
  • Condensed Matter Physics
  • Surfaces and Interfaces
  • Spectroscopy
  • Electrochemistry


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