Supplementary material from "Boolean logic by convective obstacle flows"

Posted on 30.07.2019 - 07:43
We present a potential new mode of natural computing in which simple, heat-driven fluid flows perform Boolean logic operations. The system comprises a two-dimensional single-phase fluid that is heated from below and cooled from above, with two obstacles placed on the horizontal mid-plane. The obstacles remove all vertical momentum that flows into them. The horizontal momentum extraction of the obstacles is controlled in a binary fashion, and constitutes the 2-bit input. The output of the system is a thresholded measure of the energy extracted by the obstacles. Due to the existence of multiple attractors in the phase space of this system, the input–output relationships are equivalent to those of the OR, XOR or NAND gates, depending on the threshold and obstacle separation. The ability to reproduce these logical operations suggests that convective flows might have the potential to perform more general computations, despite the fact that they do not involve electronics, chemistry or multiple fluid phases.


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Bartlett, S. J.; Yung, Y. L. (2019): Supplementary material from "Boolean logic by convective obstacle flows". The Royal Society. Collection.



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S. J. Bartlett
Y. L. Yung
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