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Issue 4, 2013
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Phoretic self-propulsion: a mesoscopic description of reaction dynamics that powers motion

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Abstract

The fabrication of synthetic self-propelled particles and the experimental investigations of their dynamics have stimulated interest in self-generated phoretic effects that propel nano- and micron-scale objects. Theoretical modeling of these phenomena is often based on a continuum description of the solvent for different phoretic propulsion mechanisms, including, self-electrophoresis, self-diffusiophoresis and self-thermophoresis. The work in this paper considers various types of catalytic chemical reaction at the motor surface and in the bulk fluid that come into play in mesoscopic descriptions of the dynamics. The formulation is illustrated by developing the mesoscopic reaction dynamics for exothermic and dissociation reactions that are used to power motor motion. The results of simulations of the self-propelled dynamics of composite Janus particles by these mechanisms are presented.

Graphical abstract: Phoretic self-propulsion: a mesoscopic description of reaction dynamics that powers motion

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Article information


Submitted
27 Sep 2012
Accepted
04 Dec 2012
First published
06 Dec 2012

Nanoscale, 2013,5, 1337-1344
Article type
Paper

Phoretic self-propulsion: a mesoscopic description of reaction dynamics that powers motion

P. de Buyl and R. Kapral, Nanoscale, 2013, 5, 1337
DOI: 10.1039/C2NR33711H

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