Self Assembly of Particle Clusters in Spherical Fluid Interfaces

Mathematical Biology / High-Performance Computing / Brownian Motion

Motivated by recent experimental systems where particles are immersed within curved two-dimensional fluid interfaces, such as colloids in a GUV’s or proteins in a lipid vesicle membrane, we investigate how active kinetics can modulate the size of particle clusters that self-assemble within spherical fluid interfaces. We consider particles that can be in one of two states (i) attractive prone to bind together and (ii) replusive repelling one another. We consider how cluster-size of attractive particles can be regulated by kinetics where particles can switch between attractive and repulsive states. We find that hydrodynamic interactions can significantly influence the kinetics of particle encounters in the self-assembly.

Clusters form and disapate transiently at intermediate switching times as kinetics cause particles to change states.

At large switching times kinetics are negligable, leading to the formation of a super cluster or in this cases large clusters separated by an energy barier of repulsive particles.