RESEARCH PAPERS: Micro-Scale Heat Transfer

Thermal Bubble Formation on Polysilicon Micro Resistors

[+] Author and Article Information
Liwei Lin

Department of Mechanical Engineering and Applied Mechanics, University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, MI 48109-2125

A. P. Pisano, V. P. Carey

Department of Mechanical Engineering, University of California at Berkeley, Berkeley, CA 94720

J. Heat Transfer 120(3), 735-742 (Aug 01, 1998) (8 pages) doi:10.1115/1.2824343 History: Received January 06, 1997; Revised March 06, 1998; Online December 05, 2007


Thermal bubble formation in the microscale is of importance for both scientific research and practical applications. A bubble generation system that creates individual, spherical vapor bubbles from 2 to 500 μm in diameter is presented. Line shape, polysilicon resistors with a typical size of 50 × 2 × 0.53 μm3 are fabricated by means of micromachining. They function as resistive heaters and generate thermal microbubbles in working liquids such as Fluorinert fluids (inert, dielectric fluids available from the 3M company), water, and methanol. Important experimental phenomena are reported, including Marangoni effects in the microscale; controllability of the size of microbubbles; and bubble nucleation hysteresis. A one-dimensional electrothermal model has been developed and simulated in order to investigate the bubble nucleation phenomena. It is concluded that homogeneous nucleation occurs on the microresistors according to the electrothermal model and experimental measurements.

Copyright © 1998 by The American Society of Mechanical Engineers
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