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Biologically Active Nematics

Michael Shelley

Lilian and George Lyttle Professor of Applied Mathematics
Professor of Mathematics and Neural Science
Co-Director, Applied Mathematics Laboratory
Courant Institute of Mathematical Sciences
New York University

Active fluids are complex fluids with active microstructure that create non-thermodynamic stresses even in the absence of external forcing.
A typical example of such a out-of-equilibrium system is a bacterial bath where stresses created by bacterial swimming can create large-scale chaotic mixing flows. Other examples arise in cellular biophysics where the interactions of biopolymers with motor-proteins can yield "active nematic" states of matter. I will discuss the mathematical modeling and simulation of these systems by building Doi-Onsager descriptions based upon a microscopic conception of the microstructural dynamics.

Earlier Event: June 19