How to Model Wet Chemical Etching in COMSOL Multiphysics®

Rasmus Karlsson November 27, 2017

Wet chemical etching is used to form patterns on surfaces, with applications including the production of integrated circuits, MEMS devices, and pressure sensors. This process has been around for hundreds of years, and was a favorite method of Old Master Rembrandt van Rijn. The optimization of chemical etching was historically a matter of trial and error, but in this blog post, we’ll show how to model the process in the COMSOL Multiphysics® software.

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Edmund Dickinson October 10, 2017

In a previous blog post, we discussed why surfaces are special in chemical reactors. In this blog post, we’ll see how surface area is maximized in reactor structures such as pellet beds, and how we can simply and accurately simulate fixed-bed reactors in spite of their local geometric complexity and the importance of microscopic diffusion.

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Caty Fairclough August 16, 2017

Research shows that microgravity exposure has an effect on the human body, such as by suppressing immune cell activity. This phenomenon also affects cancer cell migration. Making use of this fact can lead to the identification of new therapeutic targets for metastatic cancer cells. In this blog post, we’ll discuss how a research team used the COMSOL Multiphysics® software to design a culturing system to study cancer cell migration in microgravity.

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Caty Fairclough August 15, 2017

Zone electrophoresis separates different species in a sample into distinct well-resolved peaks, giving scientists the ability to analyze substances like proteins and nucleic acids. Improving this electrophoretic separation technique requires us to accurately model the transport and separation of these species. Here, let’s look at how the COMSOL Multiphysics® software can be used to simulate the movement of species during zone electrophoresis.

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Edmund Dickinson July 13, 2017

In biophysics, electrochemistry, and the design of catalytic reactors, researchers and engineers exploit the special chemical and physical properties of solid surfaces involving both gas-solid and liquid-solid interfaces. This blog post discusses the basics of the kinetics of surface reactions at simple surfaces and how they can be modeled with the COMSOL Multiphysics® software. In a subsequent blog post, we will look at how mass transport and reaction kinetics at surfaces are described for homogenized porous media.

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Claire Bost June 14, 2017

When ambient air flows through porous media, it carries moisture. In this process, temperature and moisture are coupled: The vapor saturates depending on the temperature conditions, while latent heat effects due to evaporation and condensation modify the temperature. We discussed heat and moisture transport in air in a previous blog post. Let’s address the specific transport processes we need to consider in pores and how to model heat and moisture transport in porous media with the COMSOL Multiphysics® software.

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Bridget Cunningham April 26, 2017

Sometimes when you bake a cake, it doesn’t turn out how you expected. Part of this is due to the underlying heat and mass transfer phenomena that occur within the baking process, which affect the end result. With tools like the COMSOL Multiphysics® software, you can study and predict how these mechanisms work and use this knowledge to bake a better cake.

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Bridget Cunningham January 13, 2017

For automotive designers, developing effective evaporative emission control systems in vehicles is an important task. Without these systems, volatile hydrocarbons can escape from a vehicle’s fuel tank, producing air pollution and smog. The COMSOL Multiphysics® software provides the features and functionality needed to model these systems in order to understand their operations and improve their performance. Here’s a look at one research team’s analysis of an evaporative emission control system for bioethanol-blend fuels.

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Caty Fairclough December 15, 2016

For patients with renal failure, an efficient dialysis treatment is vital. One point of focus is designing high-performance dialysis equipment that increases contaminant removal, improving treatments like hemodialysis. To accomplish this, you can study aspects of the hemodialysis process, such as membrane dialysis devices, with numerical modeling apps. These apps, like the one discussed here, enable users to more quickly analyze the effects of different inputs and improve designs.

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Bridget Paulus November 29, 2016

Transdermal drug delivery (TDD) patches continuously deliver drugs into the body for a certain amount of time. However, the skin is designed to keep out foreign substances, like drugs. To create a TDD patch that successfully bypasses this barrier, simulation can be used to study drug release and absorption into the skin. To analyze this process, Veryst Engineering created a TDD patch model with the COMSOL Multiphysics® software and compared the results to experimental data.

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Bridget Cunningham November 17, 2016

Food packaging is often composed of recycled materials, like newspapers or plastic, which may contain residual mineral oil inks. Traces of these potentially hazardous substances leftover from the recycled materials can migrate from the packaging to the stored food. To account for this, one research team developed a numerical model to analyze the migration patterns of mineral oil hydrocarbons for various packaging situations. Compared to experimental studies, their approach offers a more efficient and cost-effective way of optimizing food safety.

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