Mechanical and Civil Engineering Seminar
Fluid-elastic Structure Interactions: From Fluid-Induced Cracks to Ice-Shelf Disintegration
Abstract: Understanding the interactions between soft structures and fluid flows is critical for a broad range of applications including biotechnology, geophysics, and climate science. When fluid flows through a deformable structure, the material softness and structure impact the flow dynamics. In this talk I will give three examples of fluid-structure interactions involving cracks, multiphase flows, and foams and their self-similar behaviors. I will discuss a laboratory experiment, inspired by hydraulic fracturing, understanding the dynamics of (1) crack formation and relaxation in a soft hydrogel matrix driven by injection of viscous fluids. I will also show (2) how injection of aqueous foams instead of viscous fluids results in new fracture dynamics, controlled by the microscopic behaviors of compressible bubbles. (3) Finally, I will discuss a novel application of hydrofracture modeling, scaling analysis, and machine learning to a pressing challenge in climate science – understanding the physical conditions which determine crack stability on ice sheets and their consequential collapse.
Contact: Sonya Lincoln at (626) 395-3385 email@example.com