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      Laboratory layered latte

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          Abstract

          Inducing thermal gradients in fluid systems with initial, well-defined density gradients results in the formation of distinct layered patterns, such as those observed in the ocean due to double-diffusive convection. In contrast, layered composite fluids are sometimes observed in confined systems of rather chaotic initial states, for example, lattes formed by pouring espresso into a glass of warm milk. Here, we report controlled experiments injecting a fluid into a miscible phase and show that, above a critical injection velocity, layering emerges over a time scale of minutes. We identify critical conditions to produce the layering, and relate the results quantitatively to double-diffusive convection. Based on this understanding, we show how to employ this single-step process to produce layered structures in soft materials, where the local elastic properties vary step-wise along the length of the material.

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          Most cited references 32

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          Pattern formation outside of equilibrium

           M Cross,  P Hohenberg (1993)
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            Self-assembly at all scales.

            Self-assembly is the autonomous organization of components into patterns or structures without human intervention. Self-assembling processes are common throughout nature and technology. They involve components from the molecular (crystals) to the planetary (weather systems) scale and many different kinds of interactions. The concept of self-assembly is used increasingly in many disciplines, with a different flavor and emphasis in each.
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              A synthetic multicellular system for programmed pattern formation.

              Pattern formation is a hallmark of coordinated cell behaviour in both single and multicellular organisms. It typically involves cell-cell communication and intracellular signal processing. Here we show a synthetic multicellular system in which genetically engineered 'receiver' cells are programmed to form ring-like patterns of differentiation based on chemical gradients of an acyl-homoserine lactone (AHL) signal that is synthesized by 'sender' cells. In receiver cells, 'band-detect' gene networks respond to user-defined ranges of AHL concentrations. By fusing different fluorescent proteins as outputs of network variants, an initially undifferentiated 'lawn' of receivers is engineered to form a bullseye pattern around a sender colony. Other patterns, such as ellipses and clovers, are achieved by placing senders in different configurations. Experimental and theoretical analyses reveal which kinetic parameters most significantly affect ring development over time. Construction and study of such synthetic multicellular systems can improve our quantitative understanding of naturally occurring developmental processes and may foster applications in tissue engineering, biomaterial fabrication and biosensing.
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                Author and article information

                Journal
                Nature Communications
                Nat Commun
                Springer Science and Business Media LLC
                2041-1723
                December 2017
                December 12 2017
                December 2017
                : 8
                : 1
                Article
                10.1038/s41467-017-01852-2
                5727143
                © 2017

                http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0

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