Flow Rheology By Microfluidics

Shear Viscosity is a fundamental property that relates to fluid behavior at flow. It is essential to know the viscosity of the fluid at related shear rates, to control product flow during actual application. Fluidicam combines optical acquisition with microfluidic principles to measure the shear viscosity of products with various consistency (from liquids and gels to semi-solid emulsions) It allows to predict the processability and the performance of formulations by efficiently providing the real and precise rheological profile in the right conditions of use, with high sensitivity to slight viscosity variation, even at low values like solvents.

Analyzing low viscosity samples requires a high sensitivity of the measurement – this technology offers valuable data with high precision, high shear rates, and small sample volumes in a short amount of time.

Fluidicam microfluidics principle of measurement is simple and pragmatic. The measurement is based on a comparison of the flow between a sample and a reference solution. The two fluids pushed together through a microfluidic Y-shaped chip flow laminarly. The interface between the sample and a reference solution can be observed. A high-resolution camera detects the contrast difference (or surface tension difference) between the sample and the reference fluid, identifying the position of the interface.

Depending on the sample viscosity, flow rates, and chip dimensions, the volume occupied by each fluid changes. Thus, the measurements are based on a simple relation between flow rates (adjusted by the software), the viscosity of the reference (known), and the position of the interface, which is observed by the camera.

  • Wide shear rates

  • Fast flow curve

  • Small sample volume

How does it work?


In minutes, Fluidicam plots shear viscosity with minimal volume requirements. Multiple replicates can be made with no user intervention or resampling. Also, no additional manipulation is required when changing from one sample to another. This allows fast and simple viscosity screening of multiple formulations or fast characterization of viscosity at different temperatures.

This is only possible using microfluidics by optical imaging. Using microfluidic principles for viscosity measurement offers high accuracy. A sensor-free microfluidic chip enables practical handling and cleaning, making the technology suitable even for the most complicated applications.


Example of flow curves :