Swimming of magnetic micro-machines under a very wide-range of Reynolds number conditions

Kazushi Ishiyama, Masahiko Sendoh, Aya Yamazaki, Mitsuteru Inoue, Ken Ichi Arai

Research output: Contribution to journalConference articlepeer-review

25 Citations (Scopus)


A magnetic micro-machine, a minuscule device composed of a cylindrical body with a magnet and spiral blade, swims in liquid under the force of a rotational magnetic field. To obtain a machine capable of swimming through organs and blood vessels for medical applications, it must be designed on a scale below the mm order and retain its swimming capability under highly varied conditions. The swimming properties of a spiral-type magnetic micromachine were examined under various Reynolds number conditions by altering the kinematic viscosity of the liquid. The machine could swim in liquids with kinematic viscosities ranging from 1.37 to 5 × 105 mm2/s, which translates into a Reynolds number from 430 to 6 × 10. The Reynolds number of blood flow is within this range. In addition, the load torque for swimming was studied theoretically and experimentally. The results obtained suggested great promise for the development or a micro-machine that can be put to work inside the human body.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)2868-2870
Number of pages3
JournalIEEE Transactions on Magnetics
Issue number4 I
Publication statusPublished - 2001 Jul
Event8th Joint Magnetism and Magnetic Materials -International Magnetic Conference- (MMM-Intermag) - San Antonio, TX, United States
Duration: 2001 Jan 72001 Jan 11


  • Magnetic micro-machine
  • Magnetic torque
  • Reynolds number
  • Swimming


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