Fields, Forces and Flows in Biological Systems

A schematic of a cell subject to and producing various forces: hydrodynamic flow, electroosmosis, diffusion, electrophoresis, and chemical reactions.

Fields, forces, flows and transport are fundamental to understanding the behavior of biological microsystems (bioMEMS). (Figure by Prof. Jongyoon Han.)


MIT Course Number

20.330J / 2.793J / 6.023J

As Taught In

Spring 2007



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Course Description

Course Features

Course Description

This course introduces the basic driving forces for electric current, fluid flow, and mass transport, plus their application to a variety of biological systems. Basic mathematical and engineering tools will be introduced, in the context of biology and physiology. Various electrokinetic phenomena are also considered as an example of coupled nature of chemical-electro-mechanical driving forces. Applications include transport in biological tissues and across membranes, manipulation of cells and biomolecules, and microfluidics.

Related Content

Jongyoon Han, and Scott Manalis. 20.330J Fields, Forces and Flows in Biological Systems. Spring 2007. Massachusetts Institute of Technology: MIT OpenCourseWare, License: Creative Commons BY-NC-SA.

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