Understanding the full characteristics of fluid flow through porous structures,
such as rock, is essential for applications including oil extraction from petroleum
reservoirs, environmental testing and groundwater analysis.
However, fluid flow through porous media is very complex and difficult to analyse.
The pore space within the rock is not only difficult to access but often characterised
by parameters like connectivity and tortuosity which are very difficult to measure
and quantify. Furthermore, the flow is influenced by complex interactions between
the fluids themselves and the geometry or surface of the pore space.
By using a new etching technology, Dolomite,
a world leader in microfluidic design and manufacture, can design microfluidic
chips with channel geometries similar to porous rock structures featuring a
variety of wide and narrow channels. The channel geometry can be custom made
to represent the exact structure required.
The microfluidic chip offers excellent access for optics and full visualisation
of the fluid flow allowing fast analysis. Operating over a wide temperature
(-15°C up to 250°C) and pressure range (up to 100bar), the glass device
offers outstanding chemical resistance allowing a broad range of solvents and
chemicals to be used.
For further information on Dolomite’s custom capabilities and the complete
portfolio of microfluidic products, including easy-to-use connectors/interconnects,
pumps, valves and pressure/flow rate sensors, please visit www.dolomite-microfluidics.com.
Established in 2005 as the world’s first Microfluidic Application Centre,
Dolomite focused on working with customers to turn their concepts for microfluidic
applications into reality. Today, Dolomite is the world leader in solving microfluidic
problems. With offices in the UK and US and distributors throughout the rest
of the world, its clients range from universities developing leading-edge analytical
equipment, to manufacturers of chemical, life sciences and clinical diagnostics
Dolomite is pioneering the use of microfluidic devices for small-scale fluid
control and analysis, enabling manufacturers to develop more compact, cost-effective
and powerful instruments. By combining specialist glass, quartz and ceramic
technologies with knowledge of high performance microfluidics, Dolomite is able
to provide solutions for a broad range of application areas including environmental
monitoring, clinical diagnostics, food and beverage, nuclear, agriculture, petrochemical,
cosmetics, pharmaceuticals and chemicals. Furthermore Dolomite's in-house micro-fabrication
facilities that include clean rooms and precision glass processing facilities
allow to prototype and test all solutions rapidly which ensures a faster development
cycle and reduces the time to market.