Constructal branched micromixers with enhanced mixing efficiency: Slender design, sphere mixing chamber and obstacles
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Here we uncover the passive micromixer designs with the maximum mixing efficiency under a lesser flow impedance. Three different designs of micromixers were considered for volume constrained systems: branched systems of ducts, branching ducts with sphere mixing chamber and branching ducts with obstacles. The best performing designs, with maximum mixing efficiency and minimum flow impedance, are uncovered numerically by considering three degrees of freedom (ratios between diameters, between lengths, and between length and diameter) under total volume constraint. The mixing efficiency, the flow impedance and the mixer performance (or mixer quality) for all the designs are determined based on numerical results. The results uncover that the branched micromixer should have long mother ducts with larger diameter than daughter ducts. Our results also show that branching ducts with sphere mixing chambers and obstacles also enhance the mixing efficiency but with an additional penalty on flow impedance. Besides, systems with a sphere mixing chamber insertion in the junction between mother and daughter ducts have greater mixing efficiency than systems with embedded obstacles into the mother channel. However, for a given flow impedance, the mixing efficiency is greater for branched systems of ducts than for branching ducts with sphere mixing chamber and with obstacles. For mixer systems built in a space with limited size, branching ducts with sphere mixing chamber may be a good option because they require less space than the other systems. Here new analytical models are also proposed to predict the mixing efficiency and mixer performance based on numerical results. In summary, this paper provides important insights for the designers of micromixer based on Constructal law. (C) 2018 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.