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The success of spectroscopy to characterize equilibrium fluids, for example the heat-capacity ratio, suggests a parallel approach for active fluids. Here, we start from a hydrodynamic description of chiral active fluids composed of spinning constituents and derive their low-frequency, long-wavelength response functions using the Kadanoff-Martin formalism. We find that the presence of odd (equivalently, Hall) viscosity leads to mixed density-vorticity response even at linear order. Such response, prohibited in time-reversal-invariant fluids, is a large-scale manifestation of the microscopic breaking of time-reversal symmetry. Our work suggests possible experimental probes that can measure anomalous transport coefficients in active fluids through dynamic light scattering.

Original languageEnglish
Article number043301
JournalPhysical Review Fluids
Issue number4
Early online date25 Apr 2022
Publication statusPublished - 30 Apr 2022

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
This research was supported in part by the International Centre for Theoretical Sciences (ICTS) for the online program - Hydrodynamics and fluctuations - microscopic approaches in condensed matter systems (code: ICTS/hydro2021/9). We gratefully acknowledge discussions with William Irvine and Tom Lubensky. V.V. acknowledges support from the Simons Foundation, the Complex Dynamics and Systems Program of the Army Research Office under grant W911NF-19-1-0268 and the University of Chicago Materials Research Science and Engineering Center, which is funded by the National Science Foundation under award no. DMR-2011854. A.S. acknowledges the support of the Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council (EPSRC) through New Investigator Award No. EP/T000961/1, the Royal Society through Grant No. RGS/R2/202135, and partial support through the Chicago MRSEC, funded by the NSF through grant DMR-1420709.


ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Computational Mechanics
  • Modelling and Simulation
  • Fluid Flow and Transfer Processes


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