Wednesday, February 20, 2019

Electro-osmosis: pumping water with electricity and no magnets

An electro-osmotic pump is an unusual and interesting way to pump fluids and also measure their flow rate with only an electric field (no magnets).

Refs (in order of relevance)


  1. I watched your video of transfering gases from one cylinder to another. Super curious, can you transfer helium to an extremly small helium cartidge? A cartridge you would find in a BB Gun or what not. 10MM. I want to know if its possible to transfer helium into an extremly small cartidge? I'm trying to build a DIY small helium cartridges. You can reach me at: It would mean a lot if you would respond to this.

  2. Hello, I saw your video of how to make plasma in a vacuum chamber, this process is what i want to achieve in a school project but i cannot generate the plasma.
    the vacuum meter indicates -27inhg and when I supply voltage I only generate an electric arc.
    does the location of the electrodes have something to do with it?
    Do I need more vacuum pressure?
    I would appreciate it if you could solve some doubts

  3. Hi Ben, I could not figure out how to leave you a question on your video channel. You said to use one of the methods in the Channel Header, but I could not figure out/find it. So I am writing my question somewhat related to your water jet cutter here. I am building an abrasive flow polisher right now and I cannot seem to design in enough flow velocity using a peristaltic pump as the input pressure. I can't use a normal pump as the chemically laden slurry would destroy the pump. I am wanting a variable range of fluid velocities from ~3 to ~20 m/s. I played around with different sized containers that will hold the object to be abraded and use the peristaltic pump (specifically the tubing) to provide the input pressure into the container. But peristaltic pumps just don't have the same pressure as mechanical pumps which limits my fluid velocity in the container. Is there a pump system that I just haven't thought of? You seem to have a wide understanding of different things (and it appears pumps), so I thought I'd toss it out there. Thanks for any bread crumbs you can toss over! Sue

  4. Ever heard of a transcritical CO2 heat pump?

  5. Nope. But I am very curious now.

  6. Hi Ben!

    Now that you've investigated electro-osmosis, do you think you could take a look at electrohydrodynamics? (Biefield brown effect)

    I think you'd get a lot of views playing around with those 'lifters', and I believe the topic is muddied with anti-gravity 'conspiracies' which inhibits scientists from looking at the effect with amiable curiosity. It is strongly suspect that the B2 bomber employs this technology on its wings to make it stealth under radar. Some experiments around that would be mighty cool!

    Paper on it can be found here: