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Caltech Young Investigators Lecture

Thursday, May 30, 2019
11:00am to 12:00pm
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Gates-Thomas 135
Bubbles as Leaky Pistons: Particle Separation by Size from Suspensions

Abstract: Monodisperse micro-particles are crucial in medical/pharmaceutical applications and environmental assessment. Yet, given different particle-size-distributions in the original suspension, variations in the system design are required in many of the existing separation techniques (e.g. membrane filtration, microfluidic devices). In this talk, I will introduce a clog-free and cost-effective method to separate different polydisperse suspensions without changing the system set-up, simply using the interface of a bubble confined in a millimeter scale capillary. The particle and interface interaction will be introduced, which serves as the prerequisite condition for particle separation, followed by the critical dimension and particle separation criteria. Finally, with the time-dependent features of a confined bubble, we will be able to tune the separation criteria in-situ, and obtain multiple particle distribution functions (PDFs) in one single separation process.

Bio: Estella Yu is a Ph.D. candidate in the Department of Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering at Princeton University, advised by Prof. Howard A. Stone. She received her B.S. in Mechanical Engineering from Boston University. Estella is working in the Complex Fluids Group, whose research is built around multiphase flows, colloid science, physical chemistry, biophysics, etc. Estella’s work has focused on multiphase flows and thin films, where she aims to develop an efficient and cost-effective separation technique by combining the results from analysis, experiments and simulations.

This lecture is part of the Young Investigators Lecture Series sponsored by the Caltech Division of Engineering & Applied Science.

For more information, please contact Carolina Oseguera by email at