Journal of Fluid Mechanics

Papers

An experimental study and modelling of roughness effects on laminar flow in microchannels

G. GAMRATa1, M. FAVRE-MARINETa1, S. LE PERSONa1, R. BAVIÈREa1a2 and F. AYELAa2

a1 Laboratoire des Ecoulements Géophysiques et Industriels, CNRS-UJF-INPG, 1025 rue de la Piscine, BP 53 X, 38041 Grenoble Cedex, France

a2 Institut Néel, CNRS, B.P. 166, 34042 Grenoble Cedex 09, France

Abstract

Three different approaches were used in the present study to predict the influence of roughness on laminar flow in microchannels. Experimental investigations were conducted with rough microchannels 100 to 300μm in height (H). The pressure drop was measured in test-sections prepared with well-controlled wall roughness (periodically distributed blocks, relative roughness k* =k/0.5H≈0.15) and in test-sections with randomly distributed particles anchored on the channel walls (k* ≈0.04–0.13). Three-dimensional numerical simulations were conducted with the same geometry as in the test-section with periodical roughness (wavelength L). A one-dimensional model (RLM model) was also developed on the basis of a discrete-element approach and the volume-averaging technique. The numerical simulations, the rough layer model and the experiments agree to show that the Poiseuille number Po increases with the relative roughness and is independent of Re in the laminar regime (Re<2000). The increase in Po observed during the experiments is predicted well both by the three-dimensional simulations and the rough layer model. The RLM model shows that the roughness effect may be interpreted by using an effective roughness height keff. keff/k depends on two dimensionless local parameters: the porosity at the bottom wall; and the roughness height normalized with the distance between the rough elements. The RLM model shows that keff/k is independent of the relative roughness k* at given k/L and may be simply approximated by the law: keff/k = 1 − (c(xs03F5)/2π)(L/k) for keff/k>0.2, where c decreases with the porosity xs03F5.

(Received November 28 2006)

(Revised September 03 2007)

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