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Probing collective dynamics of active particles using modulation force spectroscopy

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3 Author(s)
Soni, G.V. ; National Center for Biological Sciences, Tata Institute of Fundamental Research, Bangalore 560065, India ; Ananthakrishna, G. ; Shivashankar, G.V.

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In this letter, we report a method of measuring the dynamic viscosity of self-propelled active particles using an intensity-modulated optical tweezer. We have used a 6 μm trapped polystyrene bead suspended in a bath of motile bacterial cells as a probe. The response function amplitude of the oscillatory bead directly measures the dynamics of the spatiotemporal structure of the motile particles. We find that unlike passive systems, the viscosity is defined by distributions of response function amplitudes that represent the long-range active temporal structures. Appropriate Langevin equations are set up that capture all these essential features.

Published in:

Applied Physics Letters  (Volume:85 ,  Issue: 12 )

Date of Publication:

Sep 2004

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