Dynamically generated patterns in dense suspensions of active filaments

K. R. Prathyusha, Silke Henkes, Rastko Sknepnek

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle (Academic Journal)peer-review

43 Citations (Scopus)


We use Langevin dynamics simulations to study dynamical behavior of a dense planar layer of active semiflexible filaments. Using the strength of active force and the thermal persistence length as parameters, we map a detailed phase diagram and identify several nonequilibrium phases in this system. In addition to a slowly flowing melt phase, we observe that, for sufficiently high activity, collective flow accompanied by signatures of local polar and nematic order appears in the system. This state is also characterized by strong density fluctuations. Furthermore, we identify an activity-driven crossover from this state of coherently flowing bundles of filaments to a phase with no global flow, formed by individual filaments coiled into rotating spirals. This suggests a mechanism where the system responds to activity by changing the shape of active agents, an effect with no analog in systems of active particles without internal degrees of freedom.

Original languageEnglish
Article number022606
JournalPhysical Review E
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 12 Feb 2018


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