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Issue 15, 2012
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A ternary model for double-emulsion formation in a capillary microfluidic device

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Abstract

To predict double-emulsion formation in a capillary microfluidic device, a ternary diffuse-interface model is presented. The formation of double emulsions involves complex interfacial phenomena of a three-phase fluid system, where each component can have different physical properties. We use the Navier–Stokes/Cahn–Hilliard model for a general ternary system, where the hydrodynamics is coupled with the thermodynamics of the phase field variables. Our model predicts important features of the double-emulsion formation which was observed experimentally by Utada et al. [Utada et al., Science, 2005, 308, 537]. In particular, our model predicts both the dripping and jetting regimes as well as the transition between those two regimes by changing the flow rate conditions. We also demonstrate that a double emulsion having multiple inner drops can be formed when the outer interface is more stable than the inner interface.

Graphical abstract: A ternary model for double-emulsion formation in a capillary microfluidic device

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Publication details

The article was received on 12 Dec 2011, accepted on 30 Mar 2012 and first published on 06 Apr 2012


Article type: Paper
DOI: 10.1039/C2LC21235H
Citation: Lab Chip, 2012,12, 2672-2677
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    A ternary model for double-emulsion formation in a capillary microfluidic device

    J. M. Park and P. D. Anderson, Lab Chip, 2012, 12, 2672
    DOI: 10.1039/C2LC21235H

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