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Disque Hall 919, 32 South 32nd Street, Philadelphia, PA 19104


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Physics Colloquium: Disorder Effects and Antifragility in Coulomb Fluids

Thursday, February 5, 2015

3:30 PM-4:30 PM

Rudolf Podgornik, PhD, University of Ljubljana  Department of Physics and University of Massachusetts, Amherst


Conceptual and formal frameworks will be presented that allows us to understand how forces between charged macromolecular surfaces are influenced by the presence of quenched disordered charges on the boundaries. I will consider examples of monopolar and/or dipolar surface charge disorder in the case of confined Coulomb fluids and argue, that the presence of disorder can give rise to anomalously long-ranged normal and lateral interaction forces as well as torques. These disorder-generated interactions persist even for overall charge-neutral surfaces and can complicate the disentanglement of other long-range interactions, e.g. the Casimir interaction, from the observed forces. Furthermore, I will argue that in the case of strongly coupled Coulomb fluids, composed of multivalent and monovalent salt mixture with quenched disordered surface charges one can observe a peculiar type of antifragility where more imposed disorder actually diminishes the thermal disorder in the system, allowing the system to thrive on disorder.

Contact Information

Prof. Brigita Urbanc