Controlling extrudate volume fraction through poroelastic extrusion of entangled looped fibers

Zehao Pan, Janine K. Nunes, Camille Duprat, Ho Cheung Shum, Howard A. Stone

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


When a suspension of spherical or near-spherical particles passes through a constriction the particle volume fraction either remains the same or decreases. In contrast to these particulate suspensions, here we observe that an entangled fiber suspension increases its volume fraction up to 14-fold after passing through a constriction. We attribute this response to the entanglements among the fibers that allows the network to move faster than the liquid. By changing the fiber geometry, we find that the entanglements originate from interlocking shapes or high fiber flexibility. A quantitative poroelastic model is used to explain the increase in velocity and extrudate volume fraction. These results provide a new strategy to use fiber volume fraction, flexibility, and shape to tune soft material properties, e.g., suspension concentration and porosity, during delivery, as occurs in healthcare, three-dimensional printing, and material repair.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number1242
JournalNature communications
Issue number1
StatePublished - Dec 2023
Externally publishedYes

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • General Physics and Astronomy
  • General Chemistry
  • General Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology


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