Transport in nanofluidic systems: a review of theory and applications
In this paper transport through nanochannels is assessed, both of liquids and of dissolved molecules or ions. First, we review principles of transport at the nanoscale, which will involve the identification of important length scales where transitions in behavior occur. We also present several important consequences that a high surface-to-volume ratio has for transport. We review liquid slip, chemical equilibria between solution and wall molecules, molecular adsorption to the channel walls and wall surface roughness. We also identify recent developments and trends in the field of nanofluidics, mention key differences with microfluidic transport and review applications. Novel opportunities are emphasized, made possible by the unique behavior of liquids at the nanoscale.