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  2. Dr Elsen Tjhung

Dr Elsen Tjhung

Profile summary

Research interests

Currently I am working on the following topics:

  • Stochastic thermodynamics of active/living systems: From undergraduate thermodynamics, we often assumed thernodynamic  processes to be quasi-static, equilibrium, and large N >> 1023In this project, we aim to generalize classical theory of thermodynamics to systems which are far from equilibrium such as living matter, or small such as molecular engines. To achieve this, we use tools from applied mathematics such as stochastic differential equations.
  • Fluid mechanics of active droplets: Active droplets are driven by some internal agents, such as chemical reactions etc. Consequently these droplets, can self-deform, self-propel etc. In this project we will model the self propulsion of these droplets and the collective of motion these droplets using tools from computational fluid mechanics such as lattice Boltzmann, and pseudo-spectral methods.
  • Statistical physics of soft condensed matter: Soft matter includes: liquid crystals in your laptop screen, emulsion in your mayonnaise, and granular materials. Although the microscopic details of these matters are quite complicated, e.g. they might involve hydrogen-bond, or complex chemical interaction, the macroscopic behaviours of these systems are often very simple. One important result in statistical physics basically says that the macroscopic properties of these system can often be defined through symmetries alone (the same reason standard model of the universe is derived from symmetries).

Teaching interests

PhD project and funding are available in my group on a competitive basis. Please have a look at this webpage for general PhD admission to the School of Maths and Stats:

External collaborations

Commitee membership:

  • IOP Theory of Condensed Matter Special Interest Group, Ordinary Member.



Macroscopic current generated by local division and apoptosis in a minimal model of tissue dynamic (2022-02-07)
Mitchell, Emma and Tjhung, Elsen
Soft Matter, 18(5) (pp. 1082-1088)

Stochastic Hydrodynamics of Complex Fluids: Discretisation and Entropy Production (2022-02)
Cates, Michael E.; Fodor, Étienne; Markovich, Tomer; Nardini, Cesare and Tjhung, Elsen
Entropy, 24, Article e254(2)

Capillary Interfacial Tension in Active Phase Separation (2021-08)
Fausti, G.; Tjhung, Elsen; Cates, M. E. and Nardini, C.
Physical Review Letters, 127, Article 68001(6)

Thermodynamics of Active Field Theories: Energetic Cost of Coupling to Reservoirs (2021-06)
Markovich, Tomer; Fodor, Étienne; Tjhung, Elsen and Cates, Michael E.
Physical Review X, 11, Article 21057(2)