Optical studies of micron-scale flows : holographic microscopy, optical trapping and superhydrophobicity

Abstract : Microfluidics is a very recent branch of science and technology. The development and the success, it has had in the last 15 years, is mainly due to the concept of lab-on-a-chip. Those miniaturized devices, integrating one or more laboratory functions, have aroused great interest among several research areas as physics, chemistry, biology and bioengineering. When a fluid is confined in a micro or nano scale structure, its behaviour is strongly affected by its interactions with the surrounding surfaces. In this context, the theme of fluid/solid slippage has been widely studied both theoretically and experimentally. Innovative technologies to enhance the surface slippage by specifically designing the solid interfaces have reportedly demonstrated to be an effective way to reduce the fluid/solid friction. To this end, superhydrophobic surfaces have increasingly attracted the interest of the scientific and technological community thanks to the large wall-slippage they present for liquid water. Though their behaviour has been extensively investigated through several theoretical and numerical methods, the experimental approaches are still indispensable to test and understand the properties of these surfaces. However, the lack of a general predicting model is also due to the fact that no one of the several existing experimental techniques has shown up as a very reliable one. Indeed, the reported measurements of slippage still depends on the specific adopted method, thwarting attempts to corroborate the proposed theoretical and numerical schemes. Therefore, it is evident that a more sensitive and effective experimental technique is still missing. This thesis began and developed inside the wider project of setting up an innovative technique to investigate the fluid-solid slippage on superhydrophobic surfaces by means of optical tweezers. Even though this project is still going on, this work reports the steps performed along the long way towards this main goal and it consists of a collection of several researches involving different scientific fields as optics, microscopy, surface science, microhydrodynamics, microfluidics and microfabrication. The researches presented in this work can be separated in two main categories: i) holographic micromanipulation and microscopy, ii) superhydrophobicity.
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Guido Bolognesi. Optical studies of micron-scale flows : holographic microscopy, optical trapping and superhydrophobicity. Other [cond-mat.other]. Université Claude Bernard - Lyon I, 2012. English. ⟨NNT : 2012LYO10001⟩. ⟨tel-00870942⟩

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