Professors Ingrid Fritsch of the University of Arkansas and Nicholas Leventis and Kakkattukuzhy M. Isaac of the University of Missouri, Rolla, are supported by the Analytical and Surface Chemistry Program for their research on redox magnetoconvection of solution in small-scale electrochemical systems. The research will greatly expand the understanding of the fundamental science of redox magnetoconvective fluidics (stirring/mixing and directed flow) as it pertains to small-scale, liquid-based systems, through experiment and modeling. The relative impact of the Lorentz, concentration-gradient, and magnetic-field gradient forces will be considered. A variety of microelectrode geometries, dimensions, configurations, and arrays will be used in studies to determine how spatial distribution of chemical species, magnitude of faradaic and non-faradaic current and magnetic field vectors, as well as the nature of the current carrying species, contribute to flow dynamics, velocities, and profiles. Mathematical modeling and numerical simulations will be used to aid in understanding the many factors that contribute to the flow and to deconvolute factors that are experimentally impossible to separate.
Small-scale fluid propulsion, or microfluidics, is essential in chip-based devices to pump and mix liquids, leading to automated chemical analysis having applications in proteomics, genomics, environmental, medical and clinical areas. The findings of the proposed studies will help to determine the role and extent that redox magnetoconvection could participate in this application.