On modeling the response of the synovial fluid: Unsteady flow of a shear-thinning, chemically-reacting fluid mixture Academic Article uri icon


  • We study the flow of a shear-thinning, chemically-reacting fluid that could be used to model the flow of the synovial fluid. The actual geometry where the flow of the synovial fluid takes place is very complicated, and therefore the governing equations are not amenable to simple mathematical analysis. In order to understand the response of the model, we choose to study the flow in a simple geometry. While the flow domain is not a geometry relevant to the flow of the synovial fluid in the human body it yet provides a flow which can be used to assess the efficacy of different models that have been proposed to describe synovial fluids. We study the flow in the annular region between two cylinders, one of which is undergoing unsteady oscillations about their common axis, in order to understand the quintessential behavioral characteristics of the synovial fluid. We use the three models given in Hron et al. [J. Hron, J. Mlek, P. Pustjovsk, K.R. Rajagopal, On the modeling of the synovial fluid, Adv. in Tribol. 2010 (2010) 12 pages, doi:10.1155/2010/104957. Article ID 104957] to study the problem, by appealing to a semi-inverse method. The assumed structure for the velocity field automatically satisfies the constraint of incompressibility, and the balance of linear momentum is solved together with a convection-diffusion equation. The results are compared to those associated with the Newtonian model. We also study the case in which an external pressure gradient is applied along the axis of the cylindrical annulus. © 2010 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

author list (cited authors)

  • Bridges, C., Karra, S., & Rajagopal, K. R.

citation count

  • 10

publication date

  • October 2010