Negative viscosity of ferrofluid under alternating magnetic field

Mark I. Shliomis, Konstantin I. Morozov

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

168 Scopus citations


A stationary magnetic field induces an increase in the ferrofluid viscosity. An additional resistance to the flow occurs due to the field oriented magnetic particles impeded by free rotation in a vortex flow. It is shown that in an alternating, linearly polarized magnetic field the additional viscosity is positive at low frequencies of the field and negative at high frequencies. The point is that an alternating field induces rotatory oscillations of the particles, but does not single out any direction of their rotation. One can say that half of the particles rotate clockwise and the other half counterclockwise. Hence, the macroscopic angular velocity of the particles equals zero. However, this corresponds only to fluid at rest. Any shear (i.e., any vorticity) is sufficient to break down the degeneracy of the direction of rotation, which results in the nonzero angular velocity of the particles. The occurring "spin up" of the flow by the rotating particles leads to the decrease of the effective viscosity, which means the additional viscosity appears to be negative.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)2855-2861
Number of pages7
JournalPhysics of Fluids
Issue number8
StatePublished - 1 Jan 1994
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Computational Mechanics
  • Condensed Matter Physics
  • Mechanics of Materials
  • Mechanical Engineering
  • Fluid Flow and Transfer Processes


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