IOP Oxford: Professor Julia Yeomans "Nature’s Engines: Powering Life"

17 May 2018 - 6:45pm to 8:00pm
Martin Wood Complex, Department of Physics, University of Oxford, Parks Road, Oxford, OX1 3PU
Martin Wood Lecture Theatre
General public (Age 14+)

On May 17th the Institute of Physics and Oxford University will be hosting a public talk by Professor Julia Yeomans, researching in the Physics of Soft and Biological matter.

Talk description

Active materials such as bacteria, molecular motors and self-propelled colloids, are Nature’s engines. They continuously transform chemical energy from their environment to mechanical work. Because they are tiny, the engines operate in a very different environment to manmade machines, where they have to contend with crowding, strong fluctuations and high viscosities.

Dense active matter shows mesoscale turbulence, the emergence of chaotic flow structures characterised by high vorticity and topological defects. I shall discuss how dense active matter might be harnessed to provide energy and show that, surprisingly, topological defects, which are important in the physics of liquid crystals, may play a role in biological processes.

About the speaker

Julia Yeomans' research concentrates in theoretical modelling of processes in complex fluids including liquid crystals, drops on hydrophobic surfaces, microchannels, as well as bacteria. Julia was educated at Wolfson College, Oxford where she was awarded a DPhil degree in Theoretical Physics in 1979). After two years of working as a postdoctoral researcher at Cornell University with Michael E. Fisher, she was appointed a lecturer at the Department of Physics at the University of Southampton in 1981. In 1983, she moved to the University of Oxford where she became a professor in 2002. Yeomans is a professor at the Rudolf Peierls Centre for Theoretical Physics. She was elected a Fellow of the Royal Society (FRS) in 2013.

Further details

The talk is open to anyone with an interest and will start at 19:00 with refreshments served from 18:45 beforehand.

Registration is not essential, but helps us judge capacity and the refreshments required.

Booking form:

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