2019 MRS Fall Meeting & Exhibit

Symposium SB11-Multiphase Fluids for Materials Science—Droplets, Bubbles and Emulsions

Fluids composed of at least two immiscible fluids, so-called multi-phase fluids, are often the base of the fabrication of materials. Accurate control over their flow offers exciting avenues to control the shape of the resulting materials, for example by forming bicontinuous domains in the fluids, or breaking them into drops and bubbles that can serve as soft compartments. These soft compartments can be used, for example, to perform chemical or biochemical reactions, screen synthesis conditions, or even to mimic aspects of biological cells. Drops can also be used as templates to fabricate advanced materials with well-defined structures and new properties by partially or fully solidifying their contents.

Fluids can be manipulated for example by tuning the wettability of surfaces, using microfluidic channels and nozzles, changing the surrounding conditions such as temperature, pH, or by applying light or electric and magnetic fields. All these challenges require fundamental insights into the basic properties and behavior of multi-phase fluids, including wetting, soft matter properties, hydrodynamic instabilities, confined complex fluids, interfacial phenomena, and flow behavior. This knowledge opens up new possibilities to fabricate the next generation of hierarchical responsive materials, low-cost diagnostic assays, advanced biotechnologies as well as the use of multi-phase fluids to produce and control living systems.

This symposium will draw together researchers and engineers working on fundamental and applied problems related to droplets, bubbles, emulsions, colloids, microfluidics, soft matter, biophysics, synthetic biology, the utilization of these fluidic systems for material synthesis, and the development of smart analytical approaches. Studies that advance our current understanding in these topics and methodologies using experiments, theoretical development, and numerical simulation will be showcased. The symposium welcomes research on low molecular-weight fluids such as oil and water, complex fluids such as liquid crystals and biopolymers, as well as high molecular-weight fluids such as polymer solutions. In addition, we welcome research on fluid-fluid interfacial properties, including third-party components such as nanoparticles, macromolecules and micro-organisms, and the response of such systems to external stimuli. This includes engineering aspects that focus on the development of new tools to manipulate fluids, such as microfluidics, as well as scientific aspects that include the use of fluid-fluid mixtures with solid dispersions to form particle-stabilized droplets, bicontinuous interfacially jammed emulsions (bijels), and high internal phase emulsions. In addition, we welcome contributions that use emulsions and complex fluids to guide living systems and those that use drops and complex fluids as templates to fabricate new materials.

Topics will include:

  • Microfluidic and non-conventional techniques for droplet production and manipulation
  • Pickering emulsions and high internal-phase emulsions
  • Bicontinuous interfacially jammed emulsion gels (Bijels)
  • Liquid-liquid interfacial physics, instabilities and wetting
  • Self-propelled or stimulus-triggered drops
  • Flows and hydrodynamics of complex fluids
  • Stimuli-responsive multi-phase fluids, including responsive emulsions, and external manipulation methods for example, with light, electric, or magnetic fields
  • Approaches to convert droplets and emulsions into particles and capsules for application in biomedicine, energy, food, or pharmaceutical technologies
  • Approaches to use droplets to structure and functionalize macroscopic materials
  • Swimming and self-assembly of living and active matter
  • Droplets as environments for living matter: synthetic cells, synthetic biology and phenotypic screening
  • Coffee-ring effect and coffee-ring diagnostics

Invited Speakers:

  • Martin F. Haase (Rowan University, USA)
  • Orlin Velev (North Carolina State University, USA)
  • Joachim Spatz (Max Planck Institute for Medical Research, Germany)
  • Alireza Abbaspourrad (Cornell University, USA)
  • Igor Aronson (Penn State University, USA)
  • Laura Arriaga (Compultense University of Madrid, Spain)
  • Jasna Brujic (New York University, USA)
  • Paul Clegg (University of Edingburgh, England)
  • Seth Fraden (Brandeis University, USA)
  • Valeria Garbin (Imperial college, United Kingdom)
  • Daeyon Lee (University of Pennsylvania, USA)
  • Anupam Sengupta (University of LUxembourg, Luxembourg)
  • Friedrich Simmel (Technical University Munich, Germany)
  • Sachin Velankar (University of Pittsburgh, USA)
  • David Weitz (Harvard University, USA)

Symposium Organizers

Esther Amstad
Ecole Polytechnique Fédérale de Lausanne
Institute of materials

Damien Baigl
Ecole Normale Superieure
Department of Chemistry

Albergo Fernandez-Nieves
Georgia Institute of Technology
School of Physics

Paul Millett
University of Arkansas
Department of Mechanical Engineering

Publishing Alliance

MRS publishes with Springer Nature