Sensitive dependence on molecular interactions of length scales in sheared soft matter

Alberto Scacchi, Marco Mazza, Andrew J. Archer

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The structure and degree of order in soft matter and other materials is intimately connected to the nature of the interactions between the particles. One important research goal is to find suitable control mechanisms, to enhance or suppress different structures. Using dynamical density functional theory, we investigate the interplay between external shear and the characteristic length scales in the interparticle correlations of a model system. We show that shear can controllably change the characteristic length scale from one to another quite distinct value. Moreover, with specific small changes in the form of the particle interactions, the applied shear can either selectively enhance or suppress the different characteristic wavelengths of the system, thus showing how to tune these. Our results suggest that the nonlinear response to flow can be harnessed to design different actively responsive materials.
Original languageEnglish
Number of pages7
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - 10 Sep 2020
MoE publication typeA1 Journal article-refereed

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