Physics of Fluids and Soft Matter (FSM)

Research in the Physics of Fluids and Soft Matter (FSM) community is centered on the understanding, manipulation, and creation of soft materials and complex flow phenomena.

A crucial aspect is the interplay of the spatial structure of (complex and reactive) fluids and soft matter with their emergent properties. Often, the collective properties of these materials emerge from the organization of simple building blocks into complex structures and phases. Hence, understanding and controlling the rich equilibrium and non-equilibrium phases of fluids and soft matter, as well as structure-property relations, play a key role.

The FSM community includes well-established sub-fields such as the dynamics of “simple” atomic or low-molecular weight fluids (e.g., turbulence, micro-fluidics, electrolytes, acoustics, phase change, and multiphase flows), the dynamics of fluid-solid systems (e.g., porous materials, granular flows, elastocapillarity), physics of plasmas (e.g., magnetohydrodynamics, gyrokinetic turbulence, non-equilibrium plasmas at atmospheric pressure, dusty plasmas), the dynamics and rheology of colloids, polymers, liquid crystals, and gels including phase behavior and self-assembly, and the dynamics and properties of bio(inspired) soft matter. These highly active fields within FSM have also seen many novel recent developments including, for instance but not limited to active fluids, (soft) robotic matter, 3D printing, nano-fluidics, nanobubbles, plasma jets, and mechanical metamaterials, with many more new topics expected to emerge in the near future.

Advisory committee Physics of Fluids and Soft Matter

The advisory committee gives solicited and unsolicited advice to the board of the NWO Science domain on proposals for new programmes. The committee also has a monitoring role regarding the progress of ongoing programmes.

The Physics of Fluids and Soft Matter advisory committee is made up of the following:

Prof. H.J.H. (Herman) Clercx, chair, Fluiddynamics
Prof. U. (Ute) Ebert, Multiscaleplasma dynamics
Prof. M. (Martin) van Hecke, Organisation of disordered matter
Dr. J.J.M. (Jo) Janssen, Soft matter
Dr. L.M.C. (Liesbeth) Janssen, Non-equilibrium Soft Matter
Prof. M.M.G. (Marleen) Kamperman, Polymer Science
Prof. R.H.H.G. (René) van Roij, Soft Matter Theory
Dr. L (Laura) Rossi, Experimental Soft Matter
Prof. M. (Michel) Versluis, Physics of Fluids
Prof. H.M.A. (Herman) Wijshoff, Inkjetprinting

NWO-secretary: Bram Borkent

Research community advisory committee duties and procedures

The research community advisory committees are assigned the following tasks:

  • Identifying new developments in the sub-field of the research community advisory committee
  • Maintaining contact with the research field
  • Maintaining the network with the Dutch National Research Agenda, top sectors, TKI HTSM,  the Platform Academische Natuurkunde etc.
  • Monitoring the progress of ongoing research programmes in the sub-field in question, including advising the Physics Round Table at the conclusion of these programmes
  • Monitoring ongoing research and existing facilities and new initiatives
  • Helping shape and implement the NWO network and forum function in consultation with the field (during Physics@Veldhoven and DutchBiophysics for example)
  • Giving unsolicited and solicited advice to the Physics Round Table and to the Science board