Hydrodynamic Choreographies of Microswimmers.
Published Web Locationhttps://doi.org/10.1038/s41598-018-21832-w
We unveil orbital topologies of two nearby swimming microorganisms using an artificial microswimmer, called Quadroar. Depending on the initial conditions of the microswimmers, we find diverse families of attractors including dynamical equilibria, bound orbits, braids, and pursuit-evasion games. We also observe a hydrodynamic slingshot effect: a system of two hydrodynamically interacting swimmers moving along braids can advance in space faster than non-interacting swimmers that have the same actuation parameters and initial conditions as the interacting ones. Our findings suggest the existence of complex collective behaviors of microswimmers, from equilibrium to rapidly streaming states.