Rotating Membrane Inclusions Crystallize through Hydrodynamic and Steric Interactions

Naomi Oppenheimer, David B. Stein, Michael J. Shelley

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

35 Scopus citations


We show that rotating membrane inclusions can crystallize due to combined hydrodynamic and steric interactions. Alone, steric repulsion of unconfined particles, even with thermal fluctuations, does not lead to crystallization, nor do rotational hydrodynamic interactions which allow only a marginally stable lattice. Hydrodynamic interactions enable particles to explore states inaccessible to a nonrotational system, yet, unlike Brownian motion, Hamiltonian conservation confines the ensemble which, when combined with steric interactions, anneals into a stable crystal state.

Original languageEnglish
Article number148101
JournalPhysical Review Letters
Issue number14
StatePublished - 3 Oct 2019
Externally publishedYes


FundersFunder number
National Science FoundationDMS-1463962


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