A numerical model for ion-drag electrohydrodynamic (EHD) micropumps has been developed. The Poisson and charge conservation equations are solved to determine the electric body force within the flow domain. The charge distribution at the electrodes is assumed to depend on the magnitude and the gradient of the electric field at the surface of the electrode. The flow field is then determined by solving the momentum equation with the inclusion of the electric body force. Simulations were performed for micropump configurations that consisted of a series of planar electrode pairs embedded along the bottom wall of a microchannel. A two-dimensional segment of the channel with a single electrode pair is simulated using periodic boundary conditions at the inlet and outlet for the charge and electric fields. An empirical model was developed to estimate the charge boundary condition for the simulations. The simulation results were in good agreement with existing experimental data. The model was then used to perform a parametric study of the effect of channel height on the pump performance.

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