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2011-02-01 - Shawn Walker


Time/Place:

Tuesday, February 1, 2011
3:00pm
101 Stanley Thomas Hall
Tulane University (Uptown)

Refreshments will be served


Speaker:

Shawn W. Walker, Department of Mathematics, Louisiana State University


Title:

Shape Optimization of Chiral Propellers in 3-D Stokes Flow


Abstract:

Locomotion at the micro-scale is important in biology and in industrial applications such as targeted drug delivery and micro-fluidics. We present results on the optimal shape of a rigid body locomoting in 3-D Stokes flow.  The actuation consists of applying a fixed moment and constraining the body to only move along the moment axis; this models the effect of an external magnetic torque on an object made of magnetically susceptible material. The shape of the object is parametrized by a 3-D centerline with a given cross-sectional shape. No a priori assumption is made on the centerline. We show there exists a minimizer to the infinite dimensional optimization problem in a suitable infinite class of admissible shapes. We develop a variational (constrained) descent method which is well-posed for the continuous and discrete versions of the problem. Sensitivities of the cost and constraints are computed variationally via shape differential calculus. Computations are accomplished by a boundary integral method to solve the Stokes equations, and a finite element method to obtain  descent directions for the optimization algorithm. We show examples of locomotor shapes with and without different fixed payload/cargo shapes.

Center for Computational Science, Stanley Thomas Hall 402, New Orleans, LA 70118 ccs@tulane.edu