Hydrodynamic interactions between two swimming bacteria

T. Ishikawa, G. Sekiya, Y. Imai, T. Yamaguchi

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

82 Citations (Scopus)


This article evaluates the hydrodynamic interactions between two swimming bacteria precisely. We assume that each bacterium is force free and torque free, with a Stokes flow field around it. The geometry of each bacterium is modeled as a spherical or spheroidal body with a single helical flagellum. The movements of two interacting bacteria in an infinite fluid otherwise at rest are computed using a boundary element method, and the trajectories of the two interacting bacteria and the stresslet are investigated. The results show that as the two bacteria approach each other, they change their orientations considerably in the near field. The bacteria always avoided each other; no stable pairwise swimming motion was observed in this study. The effects of the hydrodynamic interactions between two bacteria on the rheology and diffusivity of a semidilute bacterial suspension are discussed.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)2217-2225
Number of pages9
JournalBiophysical Journal
Issue number6
Publication statusPublished - 2007 Sep

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biophysics


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