The hydrodynamics of active fluids
Active fluids are a novel example of soft matter. We will introduce a continuum theory which attempts to describe the basic physical and flow properties of these systems. The practical examples of active fluids I will make contact with are solutions of actin and myosin, a molecular motor, and concentrated suspensions of bacterial swimmers or propellers. We have recently studied, via lattice Boltzmann simulations, the hydrodynamics and the rheology of an active fluid. I will report some results on these studies. Mainly I will discuss the fact that spontaneous flow can occur in this system, comparing the pattern with experimental ones, and discuss the rheology of active fluids, which display massively non-Newtonian features. Finally, I will discuss the comparison of our continuum theory simulations with simulations of the rheology of fully resolved self propelled particles.
This is a weekly series of informal talks given primarily by members of the soft condensed matter and statistical mechanics groups, but is also open to members of other groups and external visitors. The aim of the series is to promote discussion and learning of various topics at a level suitable to the broad background of the group. Everyone is welcome to attend..