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Multiparticle collision dynamics simulations of a squirmer in a nematic fluid

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journal contribution
posted on 07.05.2021, 08:57 authored by Shubhadeep Mandal, Marco MazzaMarco Mazza
We study the dynamics of a squirmer in a nematic liquid crystal using the multiparticle collision dynamics (MPCD) method. A recently developed nematic MPCD method [Phys. Rev. E 99, 063319 (2019)] which employs a tensor order parameter to describe the spatial and temporal variations of the nematic order is used to simulate the suspending anisotropic fluid. Considering both nematodynamic effects (anisotropic viscosity and elasticity) and thermal fluctuations, in the present study, we couple the nematic MPCD algorithm with a molecular dynamics (MD) scheme for the squirmer. A unique feature of the proposed method is that the nematic order, the fluid, and the squirmer are all represented in a particle-based framework. To test the applicability of this nematic MPCD-MD method, we simulate the dynamics of a spherical squirmer with homeotropic surface anchoring conditions in a bulk domain. The importance of anisotropic viscosity and elasticity on the squirmer’s speed and orientation is studied for different values of self-propulsion strength and squirmer type (pusher, puller or neutral). In sharp contrast to Newtonian fluids, the speed of the squirmer in a nematic fluid depends on the squirmer type. Interestingly, the speed of a strong pusher is smaller in the nematic fluid than for the Newtonian case. The orientational dynamics of the squirmer in the nematic fluid also shows a non-trivial dependence on the squirmer type. Our results compare well with existing experimental and numerical data. The full particle-based framework could be easily extended to model the dynamics of multiple squirmers in anisotropic fluids. Graphic abstract

History

School

  • Science

Department

  • Mathematical Sciences

Published in

The European Physical Journal E

Volume

44

Issue

5

Publisher

Springer Science and Business Media LLC

Version

VoR (Version of Record)

Rights holder

© The Authors

Publisher statement

This is an Open Access Article. It is published by Springer under the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International Licence (CC BY 4.0). Full details of this licence are available at: https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/

Acceptance date

16/04/2021

Publication date

2021-05-03

Copyright date

2021

ISSN

1292-8941

eISSN

1292-895X

Language

en

Depositor

Dr Marco Mazza. Deposit date: 6 May 2021

Article number

64

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