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Helical swimming and helical buckling - explorations in elastohydrodynamics at the microscale

Wednesday, March 4, 2020

2:30pm – 3:45pm

210 Robeson Hall, Virginia Tech Campus

Lisa Fauci

Mathematics Department

Tulane University


 The motion of actuated or passive elastic filaments in a fluid environment is a common element in many biological systems. Examples include diatom chains moving in the ocean, bacterial flagella propelling a cell body, cilia in pulmonary airways, and the polymers embedded in a viscous fluid whose microscopic behavior give rise to macroscopic rheological properties. In cases where these flexible filaments move through confined environments at zero Reynolds number, the confinement could have a dramatic effect upon the dynamics of the system. We will present recent results on the computational modeling of two such systems: the swimming of helical filaments in narrow tubes and the dynamics of actin-like fibers in straining flow.


 Lisa J. Fauci is the Pendergraft Nola Lee Haynes Professor of Mathematics at Tulane University in New Orleans, Louisiana. She received her Ph.D. from the Courant Institute of Mathematical Sciences, New York University. Her research focuses on biological fluid dynamics, with an emphasis on computational modeling. She is currently the President of the Society for Industrial and Applied Mathematics (SIAM), and is also a fellow of the APS, AMS and AAAS.