Lamination and mixing in laminar flows driven by Lorentz body forces
Imperial College London - Prince consort road, London, SW7 2AZ, UK, EU
Accepted: 25 November 2011
We present a new approach to the design of mixers. This approach relies on a sequence of tailored flows coupled with a new procedure to quantify the local degree of striation, called lamination. Lamination translates to the distance over which the molecular diffusion needs to act to finalise mixing. A novel in situ mixing is achieved by the tailored sequence of flows. This sequence is shown with the property that material lines and lamination grow exponentially, according to processes akin to the well-known baker's map. The degree of mixing (stirring coefficient) likewise shows exponential growth before the saturation of the stirring rate. Such saturation happens when the typical striations’ thickness is smaller than the diffusion's length scale. Moreover, without molecular diffusion, the predicted striations’ thickness would be smaller than the size of an atom of hydrogen within 40 flow turnover times. In fact, we conclude that about 3 minutes, i.e. 15 turnover times, are sufficient to mix species with very low diffusivities, e.g. suspensions of virus, bacteria, human cells, and DNA.
PACS: 47.51.+a – Mixing / 47.15.-x – Laminar flows / 47.65.-d – Magnetohydrodynamics and electrohydrodynamics
© EPLA, 2012