Physics of Soft and Biological Matter 2 SS 2014

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Lecture (2 SWS) and Tutorials (every 2nd week)
Prof. Dr. Christian Holm and Prof. Dr. Clemens Bechinger (Lecture); Dr. Owen Hickey (Tutorials)
Course language
Location and Time
April 10th, 2014 - July 17th, 2014
Lecture: Thu, 14:00 - 15:30 (Seminar room ICP 1.079, Allmandring 3)
Tutorials: Every second week on Thursday, 08:00-09:30 in CIP pool 1.033, ICP, Allmandring 3
B. Sc. 5. Semester or Master, and attendee of the part 1 in WS 2013/2014


The lecture intends to give an overview about the physics behind soft and biological matter which has been established as a novel interdisciplinary research field over the last decades. Soft matter typically includes easily deformable objects like colloids, polymers/polyelectrolytes, membranes, liquid crystals as well as vesicles and micelles. Most soft matter effects are driven by electrostatic, van-der-Waals, solute-solvent as well as entropic interactions. Typical phenomena include order-disorder phase transitions or aggregation behavior. The lecture will focus on the physical principles behind the observed effects. The course focuses on Brownian motion, hydrodynamic interactions, and electrostatic and electrokinetic phenomena in soft matter. The interdisciplinary character of this research field is reflected by the presentation of experimental and theoretical work in addition to numerical simulation results.

Recommended literature

  • Pierre Gilles de Gennes: Soft matter, Rev. Mod. Phys. 64, 645 (1992)
  • Richard A. L. Jones: Soft Condensed Matter, Oxford University Press (2002)
  • D. Fennell Evans and Hakan Wennerström: The Colloidal Domain - Where Physics, Chemistry, Biology, and Technology Meet, Wiley-VCH (1999)
  • Robert J. Hunter: Foundations of Colloid Science, Oxford University Press (2002)
  • Gert R. Strobl: The Physics of Polymers: Concepts for Understanding Their Structures and Behavior, Springer (2007)
  • Jean-Pierre Hansen and Ian R. McDonald: Theory of Simple Liquids, Academic Press (2006)
  • Mohamed Daoud and Claudine E. Williams (Eds.): Soft Matter Physics, Springer (1999)
  • Pierre Gilles de Gennes: Scaling Concepts in Polymer Physics, Cornell University Press (1979)
  • Ian W. Hamley: Introduction to Soft Matter, J. Wiley (2000).
  • Maurice Kleman and Oleg G. Laverntovich: Soft Matter Physics: An Introduction, Springer (2003)
  • Jacob Israelachvili: Intermolecular and Surface Forces, Academic Press (1992)
  • Michael Rubinstein and Ralph H. Colby: Polymer Physics, Oxford University Press (2003)
  • Gerhard Nägele: Lecture Notes: The Physics of Colloidal Soft Matter (2004)

Course Material

Date Subject Lecturer Resources
10.04.2014 Theory of Brownian Motion Holm application_pdf.pngLecture Notes (2.26 MB)Info circle.png
17.04.2014 Experiments for the determination of Diffusion I Bechinger
24.04.2014 Experiments for the determination of Diffusion II Bechinger application_pdf.pngLecture Notes (383 KB)Info circle.png
08.05.2014 Hydrodynamic Interactions I Holm application_pdf.pngLecture Notes (4.01 MB)Info circle.png
15.05.2014 Hydrodynamic Interactions II Holm application_pdf.pngLecture Notes (3.6 MB)Info circle.png
22.05.2014 Active Brownian Motion I Bechinger application_pdf.pngLecture Notes (7.81 MB)Info circle.png
05.06.2014 Active Brownian Motion II Bechinger
26.06.2014 Ratchets, Stochastic Resonance Bechinger/Holm application_pdf.pngLecture Notes (3 MB)Info circle.png
03.07.2014 Lab Tour Bechinger Bechinger
10.07.2014 Elektrokinetics I Holm application_pdf.pngLecture Notes (3.52 MB)Info circle.png
17.07.2014 Elektrokinetics II Holm application_pdf.pngLecture Notes (14.72 MB)Info circle.png

Additional Material

application_pdf.pngExtract on van-der-Waals equation of state (2.24 MB)Info circle.png

Work sheets

Tutorial 1: 16.04.2014 9:45 a.m. Worksheet 1 / TCL script for ESPResSo Solution: Worksheet 1 Solution

Tutorial 2: 09.05.2014 9:45 a.m. Worksheet 2 Solution: Worksheet 2 Solution

Tutorial 3: 23.05.2014 9:45 a.m. Worksheet 3 Solution: Worksheet 3 Solution

Tutorial 4: 06.06.2014 9:45 a.m. Worksheet 4 / Purcell Paper

Tutorial 5: 04.07.2014 9:45 a.m. Worksheet 5 Solution: Worksheet 5 Solution

Tutorial 6 (Discussion only-No new problem set): 18.07.2014 9:45 a.m.