Date of Award


Publication Type

Master Thesis

Degree Name



Electrical and Computer Engineering

First Advisor

Arezoo Emadi

Second Advisor

Ofelia A. Jianu


COMSOL, E-nose sniffer, MEMS, Microchannel




Microfluidics artificial olfaction systems are used for plant disease diagnosis in the agricultural field. In an electronic nose, the sniffer draws the air towards an array of gas sensors that detect volatile organic compounds corresponding to diseased plants. The currently available electronic noses involve a mechanical pump of moving parts prone to friction losses, limiting large-scale application. In this work, a microchannel that works on thermal transpiration principle to control the airflow inside it is proposed and designed. It has the potential to be employed as a sniffer component for electronic noses, designed using microelectromechanical systems. COMSOL Multiphysics simulation software is used to identify the design parameters of a three-dimensional microchannel and determine the airflow velocity resulting from the applied temperature using the Navier-Stokes and Energy equation. The heat transfer and fluid flow have been modelled for two different channel geometries (i.e., rectangular, and cylindrical) and two materials (i.e., pyrex and silicon). The proposed microchannel geometries are optimised to obtain the Knudsen number in the range of 0.001