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Schematic of the microfluidic device for thermocoalescence. Water droplets are formed at a T-junction configuration. Droplets are merged in a heating chamber (1 mm × 1 mm) where a microheater and microsensors are placed.
Experimental results of thermocoalescence. (a)–(c) Two droplets in the merging chamber at room temperature. The droplets do not merge. (d)–(f) Two droplets in the merging chamber at a temperature of 45 °C. Merging occurs only at a temperature above the critical temperature, .
Normalized droplet velocity versus relative heating temperature. Droplet velocities are normalized by their nominal values at room temperature.
(a) Critical temperature versus oil flow rate. (b) Cross-section view of the chamber with , , are temperatures at chamber inlet, outlet, and middle of chamber. Contact point of droplets is at middle of chamber.
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