One of the pleasures of physics at the everyday scale is the challenge that every observation brings to the table. There are many such curiosities … Similarly, the everyday biological world is full of wonders .. triggered by a walk in the garden, along a river, or watching David Attenborough!

Soft Matter

Soft materials have a number of emergent properties that arise from the combination of geometry and softness. Our work in this area has focused on understanding the role of geometry and disorder in soft matter systems, explored by solving a variety of problems across scales ranging from the microscopic to the geologic, using experiments and theory to guide each other.


Characterizing the shape of a solid is inherently a geometrical problem in that one is interested in defining the distances, angles (and changes therein) of material points near and far. How these change in response to external forces and internal activity leads to a rich experimental phenomenology seen in simple tabletop experiments combined with the host of mathematical questions…


How can one not be fascinated by the flow of fluids that are in us and around us, at every imaginable scale. Our work in this area is deliberately unfocused and driven by everyday observations and random ruminations – the rolling of a drop of mercury, the aggregation of cheerios on milk, the swimming of fish and the flutter of a flag, the viscous catenary, the origin of controlled gliding, …