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Modelling single- and tandem-bubble dynamics between two parallel plates for biomedical applications

  • C.-T. Hsiao (a1), J.-K. Choi (a1), S. Singh (a1), G. L. Chahine (a1), T. A. Hay (a2), Yu. A. Ilinskii (a2), E. A. Zabolotskaya (a2), M. F. Hamilton (a2), G. Sankin (a3), F. Yuan (a3) and P. Zhong (a3)...

Carefully timed tandem microbubbles have been shown to produce directional and targeted membrane poration of individual cells in microfluidic systems, which could be of use in ultrasound-mediated drug and gene delivery. This study aims at contributing to the understanding of the mechanisms at play in such an interaction. The dynamics of single and tandem microbubbles between two parallel plates is studied numerically and analytically. Comparisons are then made between the numerical results and the available experimental results. Numerically, assuming a potential flow, a three-dimensional boundary element method (BEM) is used to describe complex bubble deformations, jet formation, and bubble splitting. Analytically, compressibility and viscous boundary layer effects along the channel walls, neglected in the BEM model, are considered while shape of the bubble is not considered. Comparisons show that energy losses modify the bubble dynamics when the two approaches use identical initial conditions. The initial conditions in the boundary element method can be adjusted to recover the bubble period and maximum bubble volume when in an infinite medium. Using the same conditions enables the method to recover the full dynamics of single and tandem bubbles, including large deformations and fast re-entering jet formation. This method can be used as a design tool for future tandem-bubble sonoporation experiments.

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Journal of Fluid Mechanics
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