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Thermal Mass Transport in Complex Fluids

A non-invasive optical technique called Forced Rayleigh Light Scattering (FRS) can be used to measure transport properties in condensed matter that is optically transparent (PIs: Venerus and Schieber).

For example, this technique has already been used to prove that flowing polymer melts exhibit anisotropic thermal conductivity. Moreover, the results were consistent with a postulate that the thermal conductivity is linearly related to the extra stress tensor.

Applications

computer-aided design of polymer processing requires simultaneous solution of both the stress and temperature fields to be accurate. The results from this study now make such realistic modeling possible. Other applications deal with anomalous diffusion of tracer molecules in polymers or DNA through concentrated networks.