Seminar by Aaron Drews

Contact Charge Electrophoresis: Fast, Simple Transport of Conductive Particles in Microfluidic Devices

Aaron Drews

The Pennsylvania State University
Life at low Reynolds number is unlike anything we experience in normal day-to-day activities, particularly where locomotion is concerned.  While Nature has devised many ingenious mechanical systems to operate in this realm, artificial motion is often driven by some other natural phenomena, commonly electromagnetic fields, chemical gradients, or acoustic pressure.  In this lecture the novel and remarkable method of contact charge electrophoresis (CCEP) will be described.  A combination of simple DC electrophoresis and clever geometry, CCEP allows for particle velocities as high as a million body lengths per second over practically unlimited distance.  After a brief discussion of the relevant hydrodynamic and electrostatic principles, three simple design heuristics will be presented to highlight the simplicity and versatility of CCEP as well as its straightforward application to common microfluidic operations.  By the end of the lecture the audience will be able to design their own new and useful functionalities with nothing save pencil, paper, and a clever imagination.
Aaron Drews completed his B.S. and M.S. degrees in Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering at the University of Akron and is currently a doctoral student in the Bishop Research Group at The Pennsylvania State University.  His research topics have included electric flame suppression, corona-driven wind optimization, exploring and optimizing the network of organic chemistry, emergent phenomena in active media, and contact charge electrophoresis.  As the 2014 Teaching Fellow for the Chemical Engineering Department at Penn State, he is adapting the "flipped classroom" lecture style to the department's introductory chemical engineering course.  Aaron is passionate about science and teaching and intends to pursue a career at UCSD dedicated to excellence in engineering education.  He currently resides in State College, PA and enjoys his time outside the classroom and laboratory hiking, reading, and consuming potentially unhealthy quantities of good coffee.

Seminar Date