A series of symmetrical and asymmetrical microfluidic T-sensors with different inlet angles were fabricated to study the mixing characteristics of a T-type microstructure for generating concentration gradient. Computational fluid dynamics (CFD) simulations showed that the concentration gradient, transition zone and diffusion length were different for various configurations and inlet angles. Quick mix and sharp concentration gradient occurred in the asymmetrical structure with large inlet angle. The observed concentration gradients in the fabricated microchannel were consistent with the theoretical prediction. In this microstructure, stagnant zone and z-direction diffusion also affected the concentration gradient. Based on the simulation results, the microfluidic structure was optimized to generate desired concentration gradient for a cell-based study.
2007 by The Japan Society for Analytical Chemistry