The mechanics of clearance in a non-Newtonian lubrication layer

Bong Jae Chung, Douglas Platt, Ashwin Vaidya

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Scopus citations


This paper investigates the mechanics of clearance of an embedded particle in a lubrication layer of viscoelastic fluid. We show theoretically that in a slider bearing domain containing a viscoelastic fluid, the oscillating shearing motion of a wall aids in transporting away any embedded particle towards the moving boundary. The impact of geometry and material properties of the fluid layer are explored by coupling theoretical and numerical methods. Our approach suggests a possible mechanism by which the human eye could clear out any debris beneath the eyelid, under responsive blinking. Our simplified analysis brings to bear interesting approaches from physics and engineering upon a very complex biological problem and could provide essential clues about the physiological design of the tear film.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)133-145
Number of pages13
JournalInternational Journal of Non-Linear Mechanics
StatePublished - 1 Nov 2016


  • Clearance
  • Fluid–solid interaction
  • Lubrication


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