Fluid dynamics of hydrophilous pollination in Ruppia (widgeon grass)

Naga Musunuri, Ian Fischer, Pushpendra Singh, Daniel E. Bunker, Susan Pell

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contribution

Abstract

The aim of this work is to understand the physics underlying the mechanisms of two-dimensional aquatic pollen dispersal, known as hydrophily, that have evolved in several genera of aquatic plants, including Halodule, Halophila, Lepilaena, and Ruppia. We selected Ruppia maritima, which is native to salt and brackish waters circumglobally, for this study. We observed two mechanisms by which the pollen released from male inflorescences of Ruppia is adsorbed on a water surface: 1) inflorescences rise above the water surface and after they mature their pollen mass falls onto the surface as clumps and disperses as it comes in contact with the surface; 2) inflorescences remain below the surface and produce air bubbles which carry pollen mass to the surface where it disperses. In both cases dispersed pollen masses combined with others under the action of lateral capillary forces to form pollen rafts. The formation of porous pollen rafts increases the probability of pollination since the attractive capillary force on a pollen raft toward a stigma is much larger than on a single pollen grain. The presence of a trace amount of surfactant can disrupt the pollination process as the pollen is not captured or transported on the water surface.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationSymposia
Subtitle of host publicationTurbomachinery Flow Simulation and Optimization; Applications in CFD; Bio-Inspired and Bio-Medical Fluid Mechanics; CFD Verification and Validation; Development and Applications of Immersed Boundary Methods; DNS, LES and Hybrid RANS/LES Methods; Fluid Machinery; Fluid-Structure Interaction and Flow-Induced Noise in Industrial Applications; Flow Applications in Aerospace; Active Fluid Dynamics and Flow Control - Theory, Experiments and Implementation
PublisherAmerican Society of Mechanical Engineers (ASME)
ISBN (Electronic)9780791850282
DOIs
StatePublished - 2016
EventASME 2016 Fluids Engineering Division Summer Meeting, FEDSM 2016, collocated with the ASME 2016 Heat Transfer Summer Conference and the ASME 2016 14th International Conference on Nanochannels, Microchannels, and Minichannels - Washington, United States
Duration: Jul 10 2016Jul 14 2016

Publication series

NameAmerican Society of Mechanical Engineers, Fluids Engineering Division (Publication) FEDSM
Volume1A-2016
ISSN (Print)0888-8116

Other

OtherASME 2016 Fluids Engineering Division Summer Meeting, FEDSM 2016, collocated with the ASME 2016 Heat Transfer Summer Conference and the ASME 2016 14th International Conference on Nanochannels, Microchannels, and Minichannels
CountryUnited States
CityWashington
Period7/10/167/14/16

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Mechanical Engineering

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