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Microfluidic Reactors for Polymer Particles

Microfluidic Reactors for Polymer Particles

Eugenia Kumacheva, Piotr Garstecki

ISBN: 978-0-470-05773-5

Apr 2011

236 pages

Out of stock



The manipulation of fluids in channels with dimensions in the range from tens to hundreds of micrometers – microfluidics – has recently emerged as a new field of science and technology. Microfluidics has applications spanning analytical chemistry, organic and inorganic synthesis, cell biology, optics and information technology. One particularly promising application is the microfluidic synthesis of polymer particles with precisely controlled dimensions, and a variety of shapes, morphologies and compositions.

Written as a comprehensive introduction for scientists and engineers working in microfabrication and microfluidics, Microfluidic Reactors for Polymer Particles covers topics such as:

  • Applications and methods of generation of polymer particles
  • Physics of microfluidic emulsification
  • Formation of droplets in microfluidic systems
  • High-throughput microfluidic systems for formation of droplets
  • Microfluidic production of polymer particles and hydrogel particles
  • Polymer capsules
  • Synthesis of polymer particles with non-conventional shapes

This book is intended for a broad audience, including students, researchers and engineers in industry, with interests in physics, chemistry, materials science, engineering or biotechnology.


1 Applications of Polymer Particles.


2 Methods for the Generation of Polymer Particles.

2.1 Conventional Methods Used for Producing Polymer Particles.

2.2 Microfluidic Generation of Polymer Particles.


3 Introduction to Microfluidics.

3.1 Microfluidics.

3.2 Droplet Microfluidics.


4 Physics of Microfluidic Emulsification.

4.1 Energy of the Interfaces Between Immiscible Fluids.

4.2 Surfactants.

4.3 Interfacial Tension.

4.4 Laplace Pressure.

4.5 Rayleigh–Plateau Instability.

4.6 Wetting of a Solid Surface.

4.7 Analysis of Flow.

4.8 Flow in Networks of Microchannels.

4.9 Dimensional Groups.


5 Formation of Droplets in Microfluidic Systems.

5.1 Introduction.

5.2 Microfluidic Generators of Droplets and Bubbles.

5.3 T-Junction.

5.4 Formation of Droplets and Bubbles in Microfluidic Flow-Focusing Devices.

5.5 Practical Guidelines for the Use of Microfluidic Devices for Formation of Droplets.

5.6 Designing Droplets.

5.7 Conclusions.


6 High-Throughput Microfluidic Systems for Formation of Droplets.

6.1 Introduction.

6.2 Effects that Modify the Pressure Distribution.

6.3 Hydrodynamic Coupling.

6.4 Integrated Systems.

6.5 Parallel Formation of Droplets of Distinct Properties.

6.6 Conclusions.


7 Synthesis of Polymer Particles in Microfluidic Reactors.

7.1 Introduction.

7.2 Particles Synthesized by Free-Radical Polymerization.

7.3 Polymer Particles Synthesized by Polycondensation.

7.4 Combination of Free-Radical Polymerization and Polycondensation Reactions.

7.5 General Considerations on the Use of Other Polymerization Mechanisms.

7.6 Important Aspects of Microfluidic Polymerization of Polymer Particles.

7.7 Synthesis of Composite Particles.


8 Microfluidic Production of Hydrogel Particles.

8.1 Introduction.

8.2 Methods Used for the Production of Polymer Microgels.

8.3 Microfluidic Synthesis and Assembly of Polymer Microgels.

8.4 Microfluidic Encapsulation of Bioactive Species in a Microgel Interior.


9 Polymer Capsules.

9.1 Polymer Capsules with Dimensions in Micrometer Size Range.

9.2 Microfluidic Methods for the Generation of Polymer Capsules.

9.3 Emerging Applications of Polymer Capsules Produced by Microfluidic Methods.


10 Microfluidic Synthesis of Polymer Particles with Non-Conventional Shapes.

10.1 Generation of Particles with Non-Spherical Shapes.

10.2 Synthesis of Janus and Triphasic Particles.

10.3 Other Particles with “Non-Conventional” Morphologies.


Summary and Outlook.


"I highly recommend this volume to all colleagues interested in the preparation of polymer micro- and nanoparticles with unusual properties. The authors have done a fabulous job compiling all relevant works, showing the state of the art in this fascinating interdisciplinary area between particle synthesis, microfluidics and several other fields of application." (Materials Views, 2 August 2011)