Computational Fluid Dynamics (CFD) is a research field which has experienced great improvement in the last decades and now represents a mature area of science and an established engineering tool for analyzing flow problems in continuum mechanics.
On the contrary, computational micro- and nano-fluidics is a considerably less developed area which is concerned with fluid dynamic processes occurring in devices or flow configurations with minimum design length in the hundreds of micrometers or smaller. The behaviour of fluids at these scales is quite different from that at the macroscopic level due to the presence of surface tension, non-Newtonian effects, wetting phenomena, Brownian diffusion and hydrodynamic interactions with immersed particles and microstructures. These microscopic effects cannot be generally represented using a classical homogeneous continuum framework and therefore there is a need to develop new analytical and numerical tools.
During the past years, in my former Computational Microfluidics Group at the Technical University Munich, we have develop efficient Lagrangian particle-based software which can describe accurately micro-mesoscopic flow conditions. The modeling framework is based on a selective hierarchical particle approach using Brownian Dynamics (BD), Dissipative Particle Dynamics (DPD), Smoothed Particle Hydrodynamics (SPH) and Lagrangian Particle Tracking (LPT) methods.
Areas of applications include the analysis of micro/nano-particles suspended in complex liquids, viscoelastic fluids, dynamics of macromolecules in microfluidics geometries, elastic micro-turbulence, microrheology and flow of biological constituents.