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Charles Baroud

Laboratoire d’Hydrodynamique (LadHyX)
École Polytechnique, Palaiseau

The use of droplets as microfluidic reactors hinges on the active control of certain fundamental operations such as droplet formation, transport, division and fusion. I will show how local heating from a focused laser can apply a thermocapillary force of about 100 nN on a liquid interface. This force is sufficient to block the advance of a 100 µm droplet in a microchannel. This heating can be used to produce all of the required operations for lab-on-a-chip technology, some of which I will demonstrate using holographic or non-stationary optical patterns. Finally, I will discuss some recent results regarding observations on the swimming of Paramecium in microfluidic channels.