A numerical technique to simulate display pixels based on electrowetting

I. Roghair, M. Musterd, D. Ende, van den, C. Kleijn, M.T. Kreutzer, F. Mugele

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

15 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

We present a numerical simulation technique to calculate the deformation of interfaces between a conductive and non-conductive fluid as well as the motion of liquid–liquid–solid three-phase contact lines under the influence of externally applied electric fields in electrowetting configuration. The technique is based on the volume of fluid method as implemented in the OpenFOAM framework, using a phase fraction parameter to track the different phases. We solve the combined electrohydrodynamic problem by coupling the equations for electric effects—Gauss’s law and a charge transport equation—to the Navier–Stokes equations of fluid flow. Specifically, we use a multi-domain approach to solving for the electric field in the solid and liquid dielectric parts of the system. A Cox–Voinov boundary condition is introduced to describe the dynamic contact angle of moving contact lines. We present several benchmark problems with analytical solutions to validate the simulation model. Subsequently, the model is used to study the dynamics of an electrowetting-based display pixel. We demonstrate good qualitative agreement between simulation results of the opening and closing of a pixel with experimental tests of the identical reference geometry.
LanguageEnglish
Pages465-482
Number of pages18
JournalMicrofluidics and Nanofluidics
Volume19
Issue number2
DOIs
StatePublished - 2015

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Contacts (fluid mechanics)
Pixels
pixels
Display devices
Electric fields
Dielectric liquids
Electrohydrodynamics
Fluids
Liquids
liquids
Navier Stokes equations
Contact angle
Charge transfer
Flow of fluids
electrohydrodynamics
electric fields
simulation
fluids
Boundary conditions
closing

Cite this

Roghair, I., Musterd, M., Ende, van den, D., Kleijn, C., Kreutzer, M. T., & Mugele, F. (2015). A numerical technique to simulate display pixels based on electrowetting. Microfluidics and Nanofluidics, 19(2), 465-482. DOI: 10.1007/s10404-015-1581-5
Roghair, I. ; Musterd, M. ; Ende, van den, D. ; Kleijn, C. ; Kreutzer, M.T. ; Mugele, F./ A numerical technique to simulate display pixels based on electrowetting. In: Microfluidics and Nanofluidics. 2015 ; Vol. 19, No. 2. pp. 465-482
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Roghair, I, Musterd, M, Ende, van den, D, Kleijn, C, Kreutzer, MT & Mugele, F 2015, 'A numerical technique to simulate display pixels based on electrowetting' Microfluidics and Nanofluidics, vol. 19, no. 2, pp. 465-482. DOI: 10.1007/s10404-015-1581-5

A numerical technique to simulate display pixels based on electrowetting. / Roghair, I.; Musterd, M.; Ende, van den, D.; Kleijn, C.; Kreutzer, M.T.; Mugele, F.

In: Microfluidics and Nanofluidics, Vol. 19, No. 2, 2015, p. 465-482.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

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AU - Mugele,F.

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AB - We present a numerical simulation technique to calculate the deformation of interfaces between a conductive and non-conductive fluid as well as the motion of liquid–liquid–solid three-phase contact lines under the influence of externally applied electric fields in electrowetting configuration. The technique is based on the volume of fluid method as implemented in the OpenFOAM framework, using a phase fraction parameter to track the different phases. We solve the combined electrohydrodynamic problem by coupling the equations for electric effects—Gauss’s law and a charge transport equation—to the Navier–Stokes equations of fluid flow. Specifically, we use a multi-domain approach to solving for the electric field in the solid and liquid dielectric parts of the system. A Cox–Voinov boundary condition is introduced to describe the dynamic contact angle of moving contact lines. We present several benchmark problems with analytical solutions to validate the simulation model. Subsequently, the model is used to study the dynamics of an electrowetting-based display pixel. We demonstrate good qualitative agreement between simulation results of the opening and closing of a pixel with experimental tests of the identical reference geometry.

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Roghair I, Musterd M, Ende, van den D, Kleijn C, Kreutzer MT, Mugele F. A numerical technique to simulate display pixels based on electrowetting. Microfluidics and Nanofluidics. 2015;19(2):465-482. Available from, DOI: 10.1007/s10404-015-1581-5