Mathematics Colloquium

Biological fluid dynamics at the microscale: nonlinearities in a linear world

Speaker: Lisa Fauci, Tulane

Location: Warren Weaver Hall 1302

Date: Monday, December 11, 2017, 3:45 p.m.


Phytoplankton moving in the ocean, spermatozoa making their way  through the female reproductive tract and bacteria that 
swim through pores within soil or sediment interact with a surrounding fluid.   Their length scales are
small enough so that viscous effects dominate inertial effects allowing the resulting fluid dynamics to
be described by the linear Stokes equations.    However,  nonlinear behavior can occur because these structures are flexible and their form evolves with the flow. 
In addition, the fluid environment may also be complex because of embedded microstructures that further
complicate the dynamics.  We will discuss recent successes and challenges in describing these elastohydrodynamic systems.