Stretching of polymer chains by fluctuating flow fields

Demosthenes Kivotides, S. Louise Wilkin, Theo G. Theofanous

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

3 Citations (Scopus)


We investigate polymer stretching by fluctuating flow fields via numerical solutions of the Brownian dynamics of multibead polymer chains taking into account nonlinear elasticity, hydrodynamic interactions and good solvent, excluded volume interaction effects. By varying the scaling exponent of the energy spectrum whilst keeping the same Reynolds and Deborah numbers, as well as microscale length and turnover times, we show that steeper spectra are associated with stronger stretching. We compute the probability density functions of chain length, and explain their main features by examining explicit molecular histories. We quantify the interaction between strain rate tensor structure and chain geometry as a means of understanding better the different stretching mechanisms in mild, moderate and strong polymer stretching regimes.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)48-52
Number of pages5
JournalPhysics Letters A
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 15 Nov 2010


  • polymer stretching
  • fluctuating flow fields

Cite this