The polydispersity of droplets produced in a typical T-junction microfluidic channel under both syringe-pump-driven and pressure-driven flow configurations is measured quantitatively. Both flow systems exhibit high-frequency flow fluctuations that result in an intrinsic polydispersity due to the mechanism of droplet generation. In addition to this intrinsic polydispersity, the syringe-pump-driven device also exhibits low-frequency fluctuations due to mechanical oscillations of the pump, which overwhelm the high-frequency flow fluctuations and produce a signficantly heightened level of polydispersity. The quantitative difference in polydispersity between the two configurations and time-resolved measurements of individual droplet sizes are presented in order to enable the design of better flow control systems for droplet production.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Electronic, Optical and Magnetic Materials
- Mechanics of Materials
- Mechanical Engineering
- Electrical and Electronic Engineering
- pressure-driven flow
- syringe-pump-driven flow