Thu December 5th 2019
15:00 – 16:00
Seminar Active emulsions: bio-inspired smart materials
Corinna MaaƟ


Motile single cellular swimmers, like algae or bacteria, are among the most abundant organisms on earth. Despite their relative simplicity, they have developed strategies to feed, proliferate, cooperate and survive in complex environments. Our interest in such swimmers is twofold - it is of prime ecological importance to understand and predict their dynamics, but we also can draw upon their strategies to design and mass produce smart active micromaterials.
In the spirit of Feynman's "What I cannot create I do not understand", these aims require simple model systems built on fundamental physics, that are still able to emulate and reproduce biological complexity.
Simplicity is key here: using simple and universal building blocks, we are more likely to discover fundamental criteria for activity and we have greater freedom to transfer these insights to various applications.
In this talk, I will present such a maximally reduced model system - oil droplets self-propelling in an aqueous surfactant solution - demonstrate in how many ways these droplets can emulate smart strategies employed by much more complicated biological machinery and set out the non-equilibrium physics underlying such lifelike phenomena.
Go back to the agenda.

The 10th Complex Motion in Fluids 2021
Max Planck Gesellschaft
Centre for Scientific Computing