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Seminar by Cari Dutcher, UC Davis

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Seminar by Dr. Cari Dutcher, University of California, Davis

  • seminars
When Mar 12, 2013
from 10:00 AM to 11:00 AM
Where 8500 Boelter Hall
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Tuning Responsive Fluids for Environmental and Energy-Saving Applications


Complex or responsive fluids are fluidic mixtures featuring multiple phases or mesoscopic length scales, and include atmospheric aerosols, polymeric solutions and colloidal suspensions. An exciting feature of many complex fluids is their unusual dynamical response to external stimulus. The intricate dynamics observed in complex fluids, if well understood, can be engineered for key contributions in environmental and energy-saving applications.  In this talk, I will discuss examples of complex fluid dynamics and their respective applications in three parts: viscoelastic hydrodynamics, aerosol thermodynamics, and colloidal electrohydrodynamics.  In the first part of my talk, I will explore the effects of fluid elasticity on the stability of Taylor-Couette flows, using dilute polyethylene oxide solutions. Taylor-Couette flow, or flow between rotating concentric cylinders, is used to access a rich cascade of hydrodynamic flow states via variations of inner and outer cylinder rotation rates. In the second part, I will discuss thermodynamic predictive modeling of atmospheric aerosols.  Atmospheric aerosols are complex, multi-component, multi-phase, electrolyte-containing fluidic environments. The discussion will specifically focus on thermodynamic modeling at atmospherically relevant conditions, where aerosols can experience high amounts of supersaturation with respect to the electrolyte components.  Lastly, I will briefly present electrohydrodynamic driven colloidal aggregation, and an application toward rapid annealing of polycrystalline domains.

Cari Dutcher is an NSF-AGS postdoctoral research fellow in the Air Quality Research Center at the University of California, Davis.  Her research interests are in the dynamics of multi-component, electrolyte-containing solutions and aerosols. Cari received her B.S. from Illinois Institute of Technology (2004) and her Ph.D. from the University of California, Berkeley (2009), both in Chemical Engineering. Her PhD research involved experimental investigations into flow instabilities observed with polymeric solutions in complex geometries, including Taylor-Couette flow and microfluidic bends. While at UC Berkeley, Cari was supported by an NSF Graduate Research Fellowship and an American Association of University Women Selected Professions Fellowship.

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