3-D Numerical Simulations of Biofilm Flows
Chen Chen 1, Mingming Ren 2, Ashok Srinivansan 3, Qi Wang 1*1 Department of Mathematics, University of South Carolina, Columbia, SC 29063, USA.
2 Department of Mathematics, University of South Carolina, Columbia, SC 29063, USA and Beijing Computational Science Research Center, Beijing, 100084, China.
3 Department of Computer Science, Florida State University, Tallahassee, FL 32302, USA.
Received 6 January 2011; Accepted (in revised version) 13 April 2011
Available online 27 July 2011
We study the biofilm-flow interaction resulting in biofilm growth and deformation in a water channel in a 3-D setting using the phase field model developed recently. In this biofilm model, the biofilm made up of the EPS, bacteria and solvent is tracked using a biofilm volume fraction which vanishes outside the biofilm region. The interface between the biofilm and the solvent is marked by the zero level surface of the volume fraction measured from the biofilm to the solvent. The growth of the biofilm and the solvent-biofilm interaction with the top nutrient feeding condition is simulated in the viscous regime (growth regime) of the biofilm-solvent mixture flow. In quiescent flows, the model predicts growth patterns consistent with experimental findings for single or multiple adjacent biofilm colonies, in which the known mushroom shape growth pattern is obtained. Shear induced deformation in biofilms is simulated in a shear cell, providing a viable numerical evidence for using simulation tool to study biofilm growth and interaction dynamics in aqueous environment.
AMS subject classifications: 65M06, 76D05, 76A05, 76T30, 76Z05, 92C05
Key words: Biofilm, Cahn-Hilliard equation, phase filed, finite difference method, multiphase flow.
Email: email@example.com (Q. Wang)