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Issue 21, 2016
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Understanding the onset of oscillatory swimming in microchannels

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Abstract

Self-propelled colloids (swimmers) in confining geometries follow trajectories determined by hydrodynamic interactions with the bounding surfaces. However, typically these interactions are ignored or truncated to the lowest order. We demonstrate that higher-order hydrodynamic moments cause rod-like swimmers to follow oscillatory trajectories in quiescent fluid between two parallel plates, using a combination of lattice-Boltzmann simulations and far-field calculations. This behavior occurs even far from the confining walls and does not require lubrication results. We show that a swimmer's hydrodynamic quadrupole moment is crucial to the onset of the oscillatory trajectories. This insight allows us to develop a simple model for the dynamics near the channel center based on these higher hydrodynamic moments, and suggests opportunities for trajectory-based experimental characterization of swimmers' hydrodynamic properties.

Graphical abstract: Understanding the onset of oscillatory swimming in microchannels

  • This article is part of the themed collection: Colloids
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Publication details

The article was received on 20 Apr 2016, accepted on 03 May 2016 and first published on 10 May 2016


Article type: Communication
DOI: 10.1039/C6SM00939E
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Citation: Soft Matter, 2016,12, 4704-4708
  • Open access: Creative Commons BY license
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    Understanding the onset of oscillatory swimming in microchannels

    J. de Graaf, A. J. T. M. Mathijssen, M. Fabritius, H. Menke, C. Holm and T. N. Shendruk, Soft Matter, 2016, 12, 4704
    DOI: 10.1039/C6SM00939E

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