IMI Interdisciplinary Mathematics InstituteCollege of Arts and Sciences

Constitutive modeling of complex materials including multiple species

  • Nov. 4, 2013
  • 2 p.m.
  • LeConte 312


A fundamental goal of modeling complex fluids is to understand the mechanisms underlying material performance. For most complex fluids, these mechanisms are emergent properties from the collective behavior of many molecular components. Consequently, the dynamics of the deformation field are closely related to the dynamics of the microstructure. One of the main challenges in the modeling and simulation of complex fluids is to develop constitutive models and numerical methods capable of connecting the configuration at the microscopic level to the dynamics involved at macroscopic length scales.

This modeling challenge is of particular importance in the study of soft biological matter. Most biological materials are composites, containing both inorganic and organic components interacting via intricate processes and structures. These multiple species are able to self-assemble in a bottom-up approach, and have the ability to change their characteristics tailored to a specific function. In addition, they are hierarchically organized at the nano, micro, and mesoscopic level and optimized for efficiency at each level. Due to the multi-scale, multi-physics nature of the problem, simple constitutive models fail to capture a large set of material functions and observed responses.

For this reason, new, physically motivated multispecies constitutive equations are required to capture the behavior of biological materials. In this talk we discuss a multispecies model derived from kinetic network theory and used to describe the behavior of a set of complex fluids known as wormlike micellar solutions. The model is solved in several geometries and flow fields and the main characteristics arising from the precedence of the multiple interacting species are discussed.

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