The study of active matter - matter which remains out of thermodynamic equilibrium due to internal sources of entropy production - is an exciting new area at the interface of the natural and engineering sciences. On the one hand, it raises questions that go to the heart of non-equilibrium statistical physics while on the other, it promises new technology for manipulating matter at the micron-scale with applications that extend to targeted drug delivery. Fluid flow is an essential part of the physics of these systems and is a current focus area of research. I will provide an overview of this area, present the key questions physicists have been asking, and outline some of the answers we have provided for these questions. I will discuss several recent experiments from groups across the world that support our findings. I will conclude by presenting new designs for micron-scale colloidal motors that follow naturally from our work.
ABOUT THE SPEAKER:
Ronojoy Adhikari is a scientist at The Institute of Mathematical Sciences, Chennai. His research focusses on two main areas, investigating the physics of materials and designing algorithms that make machines mimic human intelligence. Ronojoy is the recipient of the Faculty Research Award from Google Inc and the DAE-SRC Outstanding Investigator Award from the Department of Atomic Energy, Government of India.
He has been Hamied Visiting Lecturer at Cambridge University and Indo-US Science and Technology Fellow at Princeton University and New York University. Ronojoy earned a doctorate in physics from the Indian Institute of Science and then worked as a post-doctoral fellow at the University of Edinburgh. Ronojoy's research has been covered in national and international media, including the BBC and Time Magazine. Ronojoy is deeply interested in Indian music and in his free time is either playing sarodes badly or taking them apart to study their physics.