Induced electrokinetic transport in micro-nanofluidic interconnect devices

Xiaozhong Jin, Sony Joseph, Enid N. Gatimu, Paul W. Bohn, N. R. Aluru

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Hybrid micro-nanofluidic interconnect devices can be used to control analyte transfer from one microchannel to the other through a nanochannel under rest, injection, and recovery stages of operation by varying the applied potential bias. Using numerical simulations based on coupled transient Poisson-Nernst-Planck and Stokes equations, we examine the electrokinetic transport in a gateable device consisting of two 100 μm long, 1 μm wide negatively charged microchannels connected by a 1 μm long, 10 nm wide positively charged nanochannel under both positive and negative bias potentials. During injection, accumulation of ions is observed at the micro-nano interface region with the positive potential and depletion of ions is observed at the other micro-nano junction region. Net space charge in the depletion region gives rise to nonlinear electrokinetic transport during the recovery stage due to induced pressure, induced electroosmotic flow of the second kind, and complex flow circulations. Ionic currents are computed as a function of time for both positive and negative bias potentials for the three stages. Analytical expressions derived for ion current variation are in agreement with the simulated results. In the presence of multiple accumulation or depletion regions, we show that a hybrid micro-nano device can be designed to function as a logic gate.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)13209-13222
Number of pages14
Issue number26
StatePublished - Dec 18 2007

ASJC Scopus subject areas

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


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