This article has an erratum: [erratum]

Europhys. Lett.
Volume 70, Number 1, April 2005
Page(s) 129 - 135
Section Interdisciplinary physics and related areas of science and technology
Published online 11 March 2005
Europhys. Lett., 70 (1), pp. 129-135 (2005)
DOI: 10.1209/epl/i2004-10461-5

Orientation of elastic rods in homogeneous Stokes flow

X. Schlagberger and R. R. Netz

Physics Department, TU Munich - 85748 Garching, Germany

received 8 September 2004; accepted in final form 1 February 2005
published online 11 March 2005

Using hydrodynamic simulation methods and scaling arguments, we consider an elastic rod which is moving in a gravitational or electric field through a quiescent fluid in the low-Reynolds-number limit. Hydrodynamic effects lead to rod bending and orientation perpendicular to the direction of motion, similar to what is seen in anomalous electric birefringence experiments on TM and FD viruses or polyelectrolytes. Static and dynamic scaling relations for the mean orientation as a function of rod length and elasticity are established.

87.15.-v - Biomolecules: structure and physical properties.
61.30.Gd - Orientational order of liquid crystals; electric and magnetic field effects on order.
47.15.Gf - Low-Reynolds-number (creeping) flows.

© EDP Sciences 2005