We investigate the self-propulsive motion of a drop containing an active polar field. The drop demonstrates spontaneous symmetry breaking from a uniform orientational order into a splay or bend instability depending on the types of active stress, namely, contractile or extensile, respectively. We develop an analytical theory of the mechanism of this instability, which has been observed only in numerical simulations. We show that both contractile and extensile active stresses result in the instability and self-propulsive motion. We also discuss asymmetry between contractile and extensile stresses and show that extensile active stress generates chaotic motion even under a simple model of the polarity field coupled with motion and deformation of the drop.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Physics and Astronomy(all)
- Physical and Theoretical Chemistry