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Acoustic deformation for the extraction of mechanical properties of lipid vesicle populations

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Original languageEnglish
Article number063002
Number of pages10
JournalPhysical Review E
Issue number6
DateAccepted/In press - 11 Apr 2019
DatePublished (current) - 24 Jun 2019


We use an ultrasonic standing wave to simultaneously trap and deform thousands of soft lipid vesicles immersed in a liquid solution. In our device, acoustic radiation stresses comparable in magnitude to those generated in optical stretching devices are achieved over a spatial extent of more than ten acoustic wavelengths. We solve the acoustic scattering problem in the long-wavelength limit to obtain the radiation stress. The result is then combined with thin-shell elasticity theory to form expressions that relate the deformed geometry to the applied acoustic field intensity. Using observation of the deformed geometry and this model, we rapidly extract mechanical properties, such as the membrane Young's modulus, from populations of lipid vesicles.

    Research areas

  • Synthetic Biology

    Structured keywords

  • BrisSynBio
  • Bristol BioDesign Institute

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