Efficiencies of self-propulsion at low reynolds number

Alfred Shapere, Frank Wilczek

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

88 Scopus citations


We study the efficiencies of swimming motions due to small deformations of spherical and cylindrical bodies at low Reynolds number. A notion of efficiency is defined and used to determine optimal swimming strokes. These strokes are composed of propagating waves, symmetric about the axis of propulsion.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)587-599
Number of pages13
JournalJournal of Fluid Mechanics
StatePublished - Jan 1989

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Condensed Matter Physics
  • Mechanics of Materials
  • Mechanical Engineering
  • Applied Mathematics


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