A simple self-organized swimmer driven by molecular motorsS. Günther and K. Kruse
Saarland University, Department of Physics, Campus E2 6 - 66123 Saarbrücken, Germany, EU and Max Planck Institute for the Physics of Complex Systems - Nöthnitzer Str. 38, 01187 Dresden, Germany, EU
received 16 June 2008; accepted in final form 13 November 2008; published December 2008
published online 12 January 2009
We investigate a self-organized swimmer at low Reynolds numbers. The microscopic swimmer is composed of three spheres that are connected by two identical active linker arms. Each linker arm contains molecular motors and elastic elements and can oscillate spontaneously. We find that such a system immersed in a viscous fluid can self-organize into a state of directed swimming. The swimmer provides a simple system to study important aspects of the swimming of micro-organisms.
87.16.-b - Subcellular structure and processes.
47.15.G- - Low-Reynolds-number (creeping) flows.
05.45.Xt - Synchronization; coupled oscillators.
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