Polymer networks with mobile force-applying crosslinks

Mateyisi, Mohau Jacob (2011-03)

Thesis (MSc)--University of Stellenbosch, 2011.

Thesis

ENGLISH ABSTRACT: We construct and study a simple model for an active gel of exible polymer filaments crosslinked by a molecular motor cluster that perform reversible work while translating along the filaments. The filament end points are crosslinked to an elastic background. In this sense we employ a simplified model for motor clusters that act as slipping links that exert force while moving along the strands. Using the framework of replica theory, quenched averages are taken over the disorder which originates from permanent random crosslinking of network end points to the background. We investigate how a small motor force contributes to the elastic properties of the network. We learn that in addition to the normal elastic response for the network there is an extra contribution to the network elasticity from the motor activity. This depends on the ratio of the entropic spring constant for the linked bio-polymerchain to the spring constant of the tether of the motor.

AFRIKAANSE OPSOMMING: Ons konstrueer en bestudeer 'n eenvoudige model vir 'n aktiewe netwerk van eksieble polimeerfilamente wat deur grosse van molekulere motors aan mekaar verbind word wat omkeerbare werk doen terwyl dit langs die filamente transleer. Die eindpunte van die filamente is aan 'n elastiese agtergrond verbind. In hierdie sin benut ons 'n eenvoudige model vir motorclusters wat as verskuifbare verbindings krag op die filamente tydens beweging kan uitoefen. Nie-termiese wanorde gemiddeldes word geneem oor die wanorde wat deur die lukrake permanente verbindings van netwerk eindpunte aan die agtergrond veroorsaak word. Ons ondersoek hoe 'n klein motorkrag tot die elastiese eienskappe van die netwerk bydra. Ons leer dat daar bo en behalwe die gewone elastiese respons vir die netwerk 'n elastiese bydrae as gevolg van die motors se aktiwiteit voorkom. Dit hang af van die verhouding van die entropiese veerkonstante van die biopolimerketting tot die veerkonstante van die anker van die motor.

Please refer to this item in SUNScholar by using the following persistent URL: http://hdl.handle.net/10019.1/6759
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