Biomimetic microchannels of planar reactors for optimized photocatalytic efficiency of water purification

Wuxia Liao, Ning Wang, Taisheng Wang, Jia Xu, Xudong Han, Zhenyu Liu, Xuming Zhang, Weixing Yu

Research output: Journal article publicationJournal articleAcademic researchpeer-review

20 Citations (Scopus)


This paper reports a biomimetic design of microchannels in the planar reactors with the aim to optimize the photocatalytic efficiency of water purification. Inspired from biology, a bifurcated microchannel has been designed based on the Murray's law to connect to the reaction chamber for photocatalytic reaction. The microchannels are designed to have a constant depth of 50 μm but variable aspect ratios ranging from 0.015 to 0.125. To prove its effectiveness for photocatalytic water purification, the biomimetic planar reactors have been tested and compared with the non-biomimetic ones, showing an improvement of the degradation efficiency by 68%. By employing the finite element method, the flow process of the designed microchannel reactors has been simulated and analyzed. It is found that the biomimetic design owns a larger flow velocity fluctuation than that of the non-biomimetic one, which in turn results in a faster photocatalytic reaction speed. Such a biomimetic design paves the way for the design of more efficient planar reactors and may also find applications in other microfluidic systems that involve the use of microchannels.
Original languageEnglish
Article number014123
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jan 2016

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Molecular Biology
  • General Materials Science
  • Genetics
  • Condensed Matter Physics
  • Physical and Theoretical Chemistry


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