Friction-controlled bending solitons as folding pathway toward colloidal clusters
Institute of Physics, Universität Bayreuth - 95440 Bayreuth, Germany, EU
2 Departament de Química Física, Universitat de Barcelona - Martí i Franquès 1, 08028 Barcelona, Spain, EU
Corresponding author: firstname.lastname@example.org
Accepted: 1 June 2010
We study the conformational transition of an ensemble of magnetic particles from a linear chain to a compact cluster when subjected to an external magnetic field modulation. We show that the transient dynamics induced by switching the field from static to rotating is governed by the relative friction of adjacent particles in the chain. Solid particles show bending solitons counter-propagating along the chain while buckling of the chain is the mechanism preferred by ferrofluid droplets. By combining real-space experiments with numerical simulations we unveil the underlying mechanism of folding pathways in driven colloidal systems.
PACS: 82.70.Dd – Colloids / 87.15.hm – Folding dynamics / 87.15.hp – Conformational changes
© EPLA, 2010