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We study herein numerically the use of induced-charge electrokinetic phenomena to enable a flexible control of ion transport of dilute electrolyte in a straight ion concentration polarization system. The effect of three convection modes of induced-charge electrokinetic phenomena, including induced-charge electroosmosis, flow-field effect transistor, and alternating-current electroosmosis (ACEO), on convective arrestment of diffusive wave-front propagation is investigated by developing a cross-scale and fully coupled transient numerical simulation model, wherein multiple frequency electrochemical polarization and nonlinear diffuse charge dynamics in spatiotemporally varying solution conductivity are taken into account. We demonstrate by detailed comparative simulation studies that ACEO vortex flow field above a metal strip array arranged along the anodic chamber's bottom surface serves as the most efficient way for adjusting the salt density distribution at micrometer and even millimeter dimension, due to its high flexibility in controlling the stirring flow state with the introduction of two extra electrical parameters. The specific operating status is determined by whether the electrode array is floating in potential (induced-charge electroosmosis) or biased to ground (flow-field effect transistor) or forced to oscillate at another Fourier mode (ACEO). These results prove useful for on-chip electric current control with electroconvective stirring. © 2020 WILEY-VCH Verlag GmbH & Co. KGaA, Weinheim.


Weiyu Liu, Yukun Ren, Rui Xue, Chunlei Song, Qisheng Wu. On ion transport regulation with field-effect nonlinear electroosmosis control in microfluidics embedding an ion-selective medium. Electrophoresis. 2020 Jun;41(10-11):778-792

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PMID: 31943244

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