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  • AME Seminar - Laufer Lecture

    Wed, Aug 30, 2023 @ 12:00 PM - 02:00 PM

    Aerospace and Mechanical Engineering

    Conferences, Lectures, & Seminars

    Speaker: Howard Stone, Department of Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering Princeton University

    Talk Title: Thin-Film Flows: From Similarity Solutions to New Insights in Molecular Biology

    Abstract: Fluid mechanics has a rich history, as of course does mechanics more generally. The ideas bridge science and engineering disciplines, even as they generate new fundamental research questions in fluid mechanics. In this talk I sketch some recent themes* from my research group, which bridge a wide range of length scales. First, I give a brief survey of some of the fluid mechanics problems that we have been investigating in recent years. Second, whereas traditional similarity solutions in course work and research typically involve nonlinear equations with two independent variables, I will illustrate an experimentally motivated similarity solution involving three independent variables, for which we construct an analytical solution that can be compared with experimental measurements. Third, I discuss the formation of the spindle in a dividing cell, which is a fundamental aspect of molecular biology. Experiments documenting a condensed protein phase on growing microtubules are reported, followed by the appearance of the Rayleigh-Plateau instability, which produces discrete droplets along a microtubule: the drops drive branching nucleation, which is an important mechanism for the developing spindle.
    *The research described was performed by many people in my research group, as well as some external collaborations.

    Biography: Howard Stone received the B.S. degree in Chemical Engineering from UC Davis in 1982 and the PhD in Chemical Engineering from Caltech in 1988. Following a postdoctoral fellowship at the University of Cambridge, in 1989 Howard joined the faculty of the (now) School of Engineering and Applied Sciences at Harvard University, where he eventually became the Vicky Joseph Professor of Engineering and Applied Mathematics. In July 2009 Howard moved to Princeton University where he is Donald R. Dixon 1969 and Elizabeth W. Dixon Professor in Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering.

    Professor Stone's research interests are in fluid dynamics, especially as they arise in research and applications at the interface of engineering, chemistry, physics, and biology. He is a Fellow of the American Physical Society (APS), and is past Chair of the Division of Fluid Dynamics of the APS. Currently he is on the editorial or advisory boards of Physical Review Fluids, Langmuir, and Soft Matter, and is co-editor of the Soft Matter Book Series. He is the first recipient of the G.K. Batchelor Prize in Fluid Dynamics (2008) and in 2016 recipient of the Fluid Dynamics Prize of the APS. He was elected to the National Academy of Engineering in 2009, the American Academy of Arts and Sciences in 2011, the National Academy of Sciences in 2014, the Royal Society (United Kingdom) as a Foreign Member in 2022, and the American Philosophical Society in 2022.

    Host: AME Department

    Location: Ronald Tutor Campus Center (TCC) - 350 (Franklin Suite)

    Audiences: Everyone Is Invited

    Contact: Tessa Yao


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