Tuesday, May 20

10:00 AM-12:00 PM Ballroom III - Level B

Biological Microswimming

There are certain mystery swimmers -- micro-organisms for which the means of propulsion are not understood. The underlying dynamics for swimming are defined by the Stokes equations with time-varying boundary conditions. A geometric reformulation of the swimming problem due to Shapere and Wilczek in 1989 allowed for a fresh look from a "gauge-theoretic" perspective. Recent advances obtained using this and other perspectives will be presented. The minisymposium will also provide a forum for mathematicians and biologists to interact and present what they see as the important problems in this area. The current mathematical methods employed are chiefly analytic in nature and bog down for animals with complicated shapes. On the other hand the important biological questions are often of a rough qualitative nature. One of the main problems in this area is to know what the problems are. This is only possible through sustained communication between biologists and mathematicians or physicists.

Organizers: Richard W. Montgomery, University of California, Santa Cruz; and Jair Koiller, Laboratorio Nacional de Computacao Cientifica, Brazil

10:00 Self-Propulsion of Spherical Swimmers Using Surface Deformations
Aravi Samuel, Howard Stone; and Howard Berg, Harvard University
10:30 Discovering the Mysteries of Swimming Microorganisms on the Beaches of Rio
Kurt Ehlers, Laboratorio Nacional de Computacao Cientifica, Brazil
11:00 Geometry of Microswimming
Richard W. Montgomery, Organizer
11:30 A Spectral Method for Stokes Flows and Applications to Microswimming
Jair Koiller, Organizer; Joaquin Delgado, UNAM, Mexico; and Marco Raupp, Laboratorio National de Computacao Cientifica, Brazil

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TMP, 4/4/97