Complex Fluids and Multiphase Flows

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Aerosols, Emulsions, Suspensions, and Foams

In the Dutcher Lab, we are interested in fundamental studies of the dynamics of complex interfaces and multiphase flows, with a particular focus on environmental remediation. Complex fluids are fluidic mixtures featuring multiple phases and mesoscopic length scales, and include atmospheric aerosols, liquid-liquid emulsions, polymeric solutions, and colloidal suspensions. These interface-rich systems are all around us in our everyday lives.

Using macro and micro-scale flow measurements and analytic mathematical modeling, we explore such areas as the thermodynamics of electrolyte-containing atmospheric aerosols, fluid dynamics and rheology of polymeric and particle-laden solutions, and microfluidics of multiphase flows.

Lab News

  • June 2024:  Professor Cari Dutcher was promoted from Associate Professor (with tenure) to Professor (with tenure).  
  • May 2024: Graduate student Margaret (Maggie) House passed his final PhD defense, with thesis entitled "Microfluidic Studies of Ice Nucleation and Efflorescence in Aqueous Droplets with Applications in Atmospheric Aerosols". Congratulations, Dr. House!  
  • May 2024: Graduate student Iaroslav Makhnenko passed her final PhD defense, with thesis entitled "Liquid sheet breakup and on leaf droplet dynamics in agricultural sprays". Congratulations Dr. Makhnenko
  • May 2024: Graduate student Maggie House's paper "Microfluidic enabled ice nucleation studies of montmorillonite clay at varying pH and ionic strengths with refreezing and relative humidity cycling" by Aerosol Science & Technology.  Congrats Maggie!
  • May 2024: Graduate student Shu Yang's paper "Rupture of Thin Liquid Trilayer Films with Soluble Surfactants: Fundamentals and Applications to Droplet Coalescence" was accepted by Soft Matter, in collaboration with Prof. Satish Kumar.  Congrats Shu!
  • May 2024:  Graduate student Musarrat Makhnun has passed her ME qualifying exam.  Congrats Musarrat!  
  • April 2024:  Graduate student Maggie House has accepted a position as Sr. Engineer - Lithography at Seagate Technology, starting July 2024.  Congrats Maggie!  
  • Feb 2024: Graduate student Nikhil Sethia passed his final PhD defense, with thesis entitled "Microfluidics to improve transplantation and cryopreservation of pancreatic islets and stem cell-derived β cell clusters". Congratulations Dr. Sethia!  
  • Feb 2024: First year Material Science and Engineering PhD student Homayra Tabassum Mumu has joined the Dutcher Lab.  Homayra will be primarily advised by Prof. Oggy Ilic, and work on particle-wave interactions at the microscale.  Welcome Homayra! 
  • Jan 2024: Graduate student Nikhil Sethia's paper "On chip sorting of stem cell-derived β cell clusters using traveling surface acoustic waves" was just accepted by Langmuir.  The manuscript was submitted in response to an invitation to be a part of a special issue for “2023 Pioneers in Applied and Fundamental Interfacial Chemistry (PAFICs): Janet A. W. Elliott”.  Nikhil led this collaborative effort with the Bischof group in Mechanical Engineering, Finger group in the Department of Surgery, as well as researchers in the Department of Physiology and Biomedical Eng at Mayo Clinic.  Congrats, Nikhil!


See Archived News for more!