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Active, nonlinear microrheology

Research Achievements

Active, nonlinear microrheology

IGERT Trainee Ryan Depuit's research aims to develop a theoretical foundation for active, nonlinear microrheology, which requires understanding of the detailed microstructure of a material. He has developed a computational procedure to determine statistically how a model microstructure deforms in response to an imposed flow. This scheme enables the investigation of microstructural dynamics of a model material to any time-dependent linear flow. Ryan is using this framework to investigate the response of dilute suspensions to a flow that results from the motion of a microrheological probe.

Using this computational framework, Ryan has revealed the fundamental complications that arise when trying to use nonlinear microrheology to extract nonlinear shear rheological properties. From this new theoretical understanding of the microstructural dynamics, he is proposing adaptations to traditional techniques used in nonlinear microrheology to make it a viable rheological tool.