Nanoseminar dr. Tyler Shendruk
Speaker: dr. Tyler Shendruk (Institute for Condensed Matter and Complex Systems, the University of Edinburgh)
Title: Controlling and Simulating Active Nematics
Abstract: While traditional fluids only flow when acted upon, a remarkable class of biomaterials spontaneously flow by means of their own internal energy. These “active fluids” comprise a wide range of biological systems that bridge between biological and condensed matter systems. This talk will focus on the example of microtubule-based extensile films modelled through active nematohydrodynamics and be given in two parts. We'll begin by introducing active nematics, the disorderly “active turbulence” they exhibit, and their continuous creation and annihilation of singularities in the orientation field that lie at the heart of many phenomena in active nematics. We will discuss two recently developed methods to locally manipulate and control active nematic films. In the second part of the talk, we will discuss a novel coarse-grained algorithm for simulating active fluids. Coarse-grained simulation techniques have proved invaluable in advancing our understanding of soft matter systems and we hope to bring such benefits to the field of active matter. We will conclude by discussing how these ideas can help inspire future designs of hybrid bio-mechanical devices to work in conjunction with active biological fluids.