Elastic membranes in confinement

J. B. Bostwick*, M. J. Miksis, S. H. Davis

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

4 Scopus citations

Abstract

An elastic membrane stretched between two walls takes a shape defined by its length and the volume of fluid it encloses. Many biological structures, such as cells, mitochondria and coiled DNA, have fine internal structure in which a membrane (or elastic member) is geometrically 'confined' by another object. Here, the two-dimensional shape of an elastic membrane in a 'confining' box is studied by introducing a repulsive confinement pressure that prevents the membrane from intersecting the wall. The stage is set by contrasting confined and unconfined solutions. Continuation methods are then used to compute response diagrams, from which we identify the particular membrane mechanics that generate mitochondria-like shapes. Large confinement pressures yield complex response diagrams with secondary bifurcations and multiple turning points where modal identities may change. Regions in parameter space where such behaviour occurs are then mapped.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number20160408
JournalJournal of the Royal Society Interface
Volume13
Issue number120
DOIs
StatePublished - Jul 1 2016

Keywords

  • Bifurcation
  • Biological mechanics
  • Interfaces
  • Membranes
  • Mitochondrion

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biotechnology
  • Biophysics
  • Bioengineering
  • Biomaterials
  • Biochemistry
  • Biomedical Engineering

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