High-throughput production of uniformly sized liquid metal microdroplets using submerged electrodispersion

Research output: Contribution to journalLetter

Authors

  • Yuxin Zhang
  • Qianbin Zhao
  • Guolin Yun
  • Dan Yuan
  • Weihua Li

Colleges, School and Institutes

Abstract

Microdroplets of gallium-based liquid metal alloys have enabled various applications in the fields of biomedicine, electronics, and chemistry. However, due to the high surface tension of liquid metal, high-throughput production of uniformly sized liquid metal microdroplets is challenging using conventional acoustic or microfluidic methods. Here, adapting the submerged electrodispersion technique that has conventionally been used for generating water-based microdroplets, we develop a simple and straightforward platform for the high-throughput production of near-monodisperse (coefficient of variation less than 5%) liquid metal microdroplets in oil without using microfluidic devices. We demonstrate the capabilities of this method for producing liquid metal microdroplets (diameters ranging from tens to hundreds of micrometers) and introduce a spinning disk to induce a flow of oil phase for preventing the coalescence of the microdroplets. The simplicity and remarkable abilities demonstrated for this method may pave the path for the development of future innovative applications based on liquid metal microdroplets.

Details

Original languageEnglish
Article number154101
Number of pages6
JournalApplied Physics Letters
Volume114
Issue number15
Publication statusPublished - 15 Apr 2019