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Mathematical and numerical model of fluid permeation and large deformation for swelling polymeric materials

Research Group: 
Mariarita de Luca
SISSA mathLab
Wednesday, September 25, 2013 - 11:00 to 13:00

Polymeric materials are composed by a network of very long polymeric chains cross-linked among them by strong chemical bonds. These material are highly deformable and a mathematical model for large deformations is needed to describe their behavior. We are interested in polymeric materials that widely change in volume when immersed in a fluid. The resulting material (polymer plus solvent) is called gel and has the property to swell due to the fluid permeation through the polymeric network. The interest in these kind of materials is strongly supported by the large number of industrial application they can be used: as valves in microfluidic channels, as superabsorbent material in diapers, as special drugs against obesity, and many others. We present a mathematical and numerical model that couples the large deformation of the polymeric network with the fluid permeation in order to describe and simulate the behavior of swelling gels.

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