Experiments in Fluids

, Volume 34, Issue 5, pp 635–642

A novel system for measuring liquid flow rates with nanoliter per minute resolution


DOI: 10.1007/s00348-003-0610-4

Cite this article as:
Westin, K.J.A., Choi, CH. & Breuer, K.S. Exp Fluids (2003) 34: 635. doi:10.1007/s00348-003-0610-4


An experimental system for liquid flow-rate measurements of pressure-driven flow through microchannels is described. The displacement of a meniscus is tracked in a precision borehole using a laser distance meter mounted on a feed-back controlled traversing stage. Successful measurements of flow rates as small as 30 pl/s are reported when using non-evaporative hexadecane, and evaporative fluids such as ethanol are measured at flow rates of 0.1 nl/s. The set-up can also be used for measurements in time-dependent flows. Finally, a discussion of the influence of dissolved nitrogen on the measured flow rates is given.

Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag 2003

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Division of EngineeringBrown UniversityProvidenceUSA

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