Mechanism for clogging of microchannels

Hans M. Wyss, Daniel L. Blair, Jeffrey F. Morris, Howard A. Stone, David A. Weitz

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

229 Scopus citations


We investigate clogging of microchannels at the single-pore level using microfluidic devices as model porous media. The process of clogging is studied at low volume fractions and high flow rates, a technologically important regime. We show that clogging is independent of particle flow rate and volume fraction, indicating that collective effects do not play an important role. Instead, the average number of particles that can pass through a pore before it clogs scales with the ratio of pore to particle size. We present a simple model that accounts for the data.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number061402
JournalPhysical Review E - Statistical, Nonlinear, and Soft Matter Physics
Issue number6
StatePublished - 2006
Externally publishedYes

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Condensed Matter Physics
  • Statistical and Nonlinear Physics
  • Statistics and Probability


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