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Computational Modeling of a Piezoelectrically Actuated Microvalve for the Control of Liquid Flowrate

S.M. Saeidi, J.M. Khodadadi, C.A. Johnson, C. Lee and E-H Yang
Auburn University, US

microfluidics, microvalve, modeling, CFD, liquid flow

Computational modeling of liquid flow in a piezoelectrically actuated microvalve is discussed. A 3-D structured mesh with 330,000 hexahedral cells that represents the major features of the microvalve was generated for the numerical model. Due to the symmetry of the microvalve about two planes, only one-fourth of the microvalve was modeled. The mesh is denser in the regions which experience excessive pressure drop. The commercial CFD code FLUENT was utilized for the solution of the continuity and momentum equations. The three-dimensional velocity and pressure fields were obtained. By changing the mass flow rate at the inlet, the pressure drop between the inlet and outlet ports is found and a loss coefficient is determined for every deflection. The predicted pressure drop values are compared to the experimental data for water flow within the microvalve.

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