Electro-mechanical model for electrostatic filling of capillaries

elctrmech modelElectrospray based thrusters can be used to provide very precise and efficient propulsion capabilities to small satellites. This propulsion is ideal for precise positioning of spacecrafts operating in formation flights, orbit maintenance or exploration missions within the solar system. LMTS is currently leading an international European consortium (MicroThrust) aimed at developing and characterizing a system based on this technology.


The electrospray is based on the electrical extraction of ions or droplets of ionic liquid filling a capillary micromachined in a Silicon-On-Insulator (SOI) wafer.


The objective of this project will be to investigate the possibility of using an active potential on the device layer of the SOI to control the filling and stability of the ionic liquid inside the capillary. The project will certainly involve a mathematical model followed by experimental validation on metal coated glass capillaries or actual microfabricated electrospray devices (in the case of a Master project).



Master (thesis) project, Semester project


Fall Semester, Spring Semester



Type of work:

Modeling, Test and characterization


Interest in electrostatics, Understanding of mathematical simulation software (e.g. Matlab, Ansys), Understanding of electrostatic forces, Understanding of microfluidics and liquid wetting


Electrosprays, Ionic Liquid, Wetting properties


Simon Dandavino

Projects in the LMTS - Fall 2011













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