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Gravity induced formation of spinners and polar order of spherical microswimmers on a surface

Abstract : We numerically study the hydrodynamics of a self-propelled particle system, consisting of spherical squirmers sedimented on a flat surface. We observe the emergence of dynamic structures, due to the interplay of particle-particle and particle-wall hydrodynamic interactions. At low coverages, our results demonstrate the formation of small chiral spinners: two or three particles are bound together via near-field hydrodynamic interactions and form a rotating dimer or trimer respectively. The stability of the self-organised spinners can be tuned by the strength of the sedimentation. Increasing the particle concentration leads more interactions between particles and the spinners become unstable. At higher area fractions we find that pusher particles can align their swimming directions leading to a stable polar order and enhanced motility. Further, we test the stability of the polar order in the presence of a solid boundary. We observe the emergence of a particle vortex in a cylindrical confinement.
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https://hal.archives-ouvertes.fr/hal-02290548
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Submitted on : Friday, December 20, 2019 - 10:52:57 AM
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Zaiyi Shen, Juho S Lintuvuori. Gravity induced formation of spinners and polar order of spherical microswimmers on a surface. Physical Review Fluids, American Physical Society, 2019, 4 (12), ⟨10.1103/PhysRevFluids.4.123101⟩. ⟨hal-02290548⟩

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