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New Trends in the Physics and Mechanics of Biological SystemsLecture Notes of the Les Houches Summer School: Volume 92, July 2009$
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Martine Ben Amar, Alain Goriely, Martin Michael Müller, and Leticia Cugliandolo

Print publication date: 2011

Print ISBN-13: 9780199605835

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: September 2011

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199605835.001.0001

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Active fluids and gels

Active fluids and gels

(p.97) 4 Active fluids and gels
New Trends in the Physics and Mechanics of Biological Systems

Frank Jülicher

Oxford University Press

This chapter outlines the general hydrodynamic theory of active polar fluids and gels. It starts from a fluid in thermal equilibrium and uses concepts from nonequilibrium thermodynamics to arrive at hydrodynamic equations. It focuses on slow or hydrodynamic variables in the system, and identifies conjugate thermodynamic fluxes and forces. In linear response theory, the fluxes can be expressed using dissipative and reactive coupling coefficients. Together with conservation laws, the full hydrodynamic equations can be written. The chapter discusses simple situations to illustrate the novel physics that emerges in such systems. It concludes with a brief discussion of biological examples for which such approaches are relevant.

Keywords:   hydrodynamic equations, active polar gels, fluids, thermodynamic flux

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