mi9030092 (12 pages)
The Kelvin water dropper is an electrostatic generator that can generate high voltage electricity through water dripping. A conventional Kelvin water dropper converts the gravitational potential energy of water into electricity. Due to its low current output, Kelvin water droppers can only be used in limited cases that demand high voltage. In the present study, microfluidic Kelvin water droppers (MKWDs) were built in house to demonstrate a low-cost but accurately controlled miniature device for high voltage generation. The performance of the MKWDs was characterized using different channel diameters and flow rates. The best performed MKWD was then used to conduct experiments of the electrowetting of liquid on dielectric surfaces. Electrowetting is a process that has been widely used in manipulating the wetting properties of a surface using an external electric field. Usually electrowetting requires an expensive DC power supply that outputs high voltage. However, in this research, it was demonstrated that electrowetting can be conducted by simply using an MKWD. Additionally, an analytic model was developed to simulate the electrowetting process. Finally, the model’s ability to well predict the liquid deformation during electrowetting using MKWDs was validated.
Original Publication Citation
Yazdanshenas, E., Qiang, T., & Xiaoyu, Z. (2018). Electrowetting using a microfluidic Kelvin water dropper. Micromachines, 9(92), mi9030092. doi:10.3390/mi9030092
Yazdanshenas, Elias; Tang, Qiang; and Zhang, Xiaoyu, "Electrowetting Using a Microfluidic Kelvin Water Dropper" (2018). Mechanical & Aerospace Engineering Faculty Publications. 63.