Spontaneous flow in polar active fluids: the effect of a phenomenological self propulsion-like term

Francesco Bonelli*, Giuseppe Gonnella, Adriano Tiribocchi, Davide Marenduzzo

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Abstract.: We present hybrid lattice Boltzmann simulations of extensile and contractile active fluids where we incorporate phenomenologically the tendency of active particles such as cell and bacteria, to move, or swim, along the local orientation. Quite surprisingly, we show that the interplay between alignment and activity can lead to completely different results, according to geometry (periodic boundary conditions or confinement between flat walls) and nature of the activity (extensile or contractile). An interesting generic outcome is that the alignment interaction can transform stationary active patterns into continuously moving ones: the dynamics of these evolving patterns can be oscillatory or chaotic according to the strength of the alignment term. Our results suggest that flow-polarisation alignment can have important consequences on the collective dynamics of active fluids and active gel. Graphical abstract: [Figure not available: see fulltext.]

Original languageEnglish
Article number1
Pages (from-to)1-10
Number of pages10
JournalThe European Physical Journal E (EPJ E)
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jan 2016


  • Topical Issue: Multi-scale phenomena in complex flows and flowing matter


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