Ceramic magnetohydrodynamic (MHD) micropump

Daniel J. Sadler, Rajnish G. Changrani, Chia Fu Chou, Daniel Zindel, Jeremy W. Burdon, Frederic Zenhausern

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

10 Scopus citations


Magnetohydrodynamic (MHD) pumping has several attractive features including no-moving-parts operation, compatibility with biological solutions, and bi-directional pumping capability. In this work, a re-circulating ceramic MHD micropump is described. The MHD operation principle is based on the generation of Lorenz forces on ions within an electrolytic solution by means of perpendicular electric and magnetic fields. These Lorenz forces propel the ions through a channel, thus creating a net flow with no moving parts. Fabrication of the pumps is achieved by means of a new ceramic MEMS (CMEMS) platform in which devices are built from multiple layers of green-sheet ceramics. The major advantage to this technology is that unlike many other fabrication technologies, the multi-layer ceramic CMEMS platform is truly three-dimensional, thus enabling the building of complex integrated systems within a single platform. The ceramic-based MHD pumps have been analyzed and tested using both finite element modeling and experimental validation. Test results indicate that the pumps are capable of pumping a wide range of biological fluids in the flow rate range of microliters per minute. Additionally, good stability over 24 hours and good correlation with modeling data have been verified.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)162-170
Number of pages9
JournalProceedings of SPIE - The International Society for Optical Engineering
StatePublished - 2001


  • Ceramic MEMS
  • Magnetohydrodynamic
  • Microfluidics
  • Micropump
  • Multilayer Ceramic

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Electronic, Optical and Magnetic Materials
  • Condensed Matter Physics
  • Computer Science Applications
  • Applied Mathematics
  • Electrical and Electronic Engineering


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