Thumbnail Image

Squirmer rods as elongated microswimmers: flow fields and confinement

Zantop, Arne W.; Stark, Holger

Microswimmers or active elements, such as bacteria and active filaments, have an elongated shape, which determines their individual and collective dynamics. There is still a need to identify what role long-range hydrodynamic interactions play in their fascinating dynamic structure formation. We construct rods of different aspect ratios using several spherical squirmer model swimmers. With the help of the mesoscale simulation method of multi-particle collision dynamics we analyze the flow fields of these squirmer rods both in a bulk fluid and in Hele-Shaw geometries of different slab widths. Based on the hydrodynamic multipole expansion either for bulk or confinement between two parallel plates, we categorize the different multipole contributions of neutral as well as pusher-type squirmer rods. We demonstrate how confinement alters the radial decay of the flow fields for a given force or source multipole moment compared to the bulk fluid.
Published in: Soft Matter, 10.1039/D0SM00616E, Royal Society of Chemistry (RSC)