Inertial lateral migration and self-assembly of particles in bidisperse suspensions in microchannel flows

  • Yanfeng Gao
  • Pascale Magaud
  • Christine Lafforgue
  • Stéphane Colin
  • Lucien BaldasEmail author
Research Paper


Inertial focusing of particles in microchannels has demonstrated a great potential for a wide range of applications addressing various challenges, such as clinical diagnosis, biological assay, water treatment, etc. Even though numerous theoretical, numerical and experimental studies have been performed to identify the physical mechanisms underlying the migration of particles in confined environments, only a few works, up to now, have been devoted to the effects resulting from the interactions between particles of different sizes in polydisperse suspensions. In this work, high-speed bright-field imaging was used to experimentally analyse the behaviour of model bidisperse suspensions. The influences of bidispersity on (1) the lateral inertial migration of the particles towards equilibrium positions within the channel cross-section and (2) their longitudinal ordering into trains in the flow direction, were investigated under different conditions by varying the Reynolds number, the particles’ size ratios and concentrations. The quantitative measurements and statistical analysis of the experimental data show that the bidispersity can modify not only the lateral migration process but also the sequential particle-ordering phenomenon.


Microfluidics Bidisperse suspensions Separation Inertial focusing Particle-laden flows 



This work was partly supported by the Fédération de Recherche FERMaT, FR 3089, Université de Toulouse, France and the China Scholarship Council (CSC N° 201304490076).

Supplementary material

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Supplementary material 2 (RAR 3716 kb)
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Supplementary material 3 (RAR 4670 kb)


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag GmbH Germany, part of Springer Nature 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Institut Clément Ader (ICA), CNRS, INSA, ISAE-SUPAERO, Mines-Albi, UPSUniversité de ToulouseToulouseFrance
  2. 2.Université de LimogesLimogesFrance
  3. 3.Laboratoire d’Ingénierie des Systèmes Biologiques et des Procédées (LISBP), CNRS, INRA, INSAUniversité de ToulouseToulouseFrance

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