dr.ir. W.K. den Otter (Wouter)

Assistant Professor

About Me

1987 - 1993: Student of applied physics (ingenieur, MSc) at the Technische Universiteit Eindhoven (TUE, Eindhoven, The Netherlands), with an emphasis on solid state physics, graduating in simulations of Low Energy Ion Scattering (LEIS) of a supported rhodium catalyst.
1993 - 1998: PhD student at the faculty of chemical engineering of the Universiteit Twente (UT, Enschede, The Netherlands), combining statistical mechanics of rare events with Molecular Dynamics simulations to study the free-energy landscape and conformational transition rates of calix[4]arenes in solutions.
1998 - 2001: PostDoc at the chemistry department of the University of Manchester Institute of Science and Technology (UMIST, Manchester, UK), simulating liquid crystals with Dissipative Particle Dynamics and free energies with Molecular Dynamics.
2001 - 2003: PostDoc at the Faculty of Physics of the Universiteit Twente, exploring the mechanical  properties of lipid bilayers and worm-like micelles by coarse-grained simulations.
2003 - 2011: Assistant professor a the Faculty of Science and Technology of the Universiteit Twente, using (highly) coarse-grained models in combinations with Molecular Dynamics, Brownian Dynamics and free-energy techniques to study the mechanical and dynamical properties of lipid membranes, the thermodynamics of trans-membrane pores, the periodic tumbling of liquid crystals under shear, the dynamics of liquid-liquid interfaces, the dynamical properties of (sheared) polymeric solutions and of polymer melts, viscous effects in Atomic Force Microscopy, (de-)mixing of granules in a rotating drum, and the self-assembly to three-legged clathrin proteins into polyhedral cages.
2011 - 2016: Assistant professor a the Faculty of Science and Technology and the Faculty of Constructive Sciences of the Universiteit Twente, using simulations and statistical mechanical theory to explore the assembly of clathrin-coated pits against a cell membrane, developing polymorph patchy particles to explore the aggregation processes of alpha-synuclein in Parkinson's disease, and derived & validated a quaternion-based rotational Brownian Dynamics algorithm.
2016 - now: Assistant professor a the Faculty of Engineering Technology at the University of Twente.


Free Energy
Computer Simulation
Molecular Dynamics
Shear Deformation


Recent Articles
Windows-Yule, K., Scheper, B. J., den Otter, W. K., Parker, D. J., & Thornton, A. R. (2016). Modifying self-assembly and species separation in three-dimensional systems of shape-anisotropic particles. Physical review E: Statistical, nonlinear, and soft matter physics, 93(2), -. [020901]. DOI: 10.1103/PhysRevE.93.020901

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Contact Details

Visiting Address

University of Twente
Faculty of Engineering Technology
Horst - Ring (building no. 21), room N221
De Horst 2
7522LW  Enschede
The Netherlands

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Mailing Address

University of Twente
Faculty of Engineering Technology
Horst - Ring  N221
P.O. Box 217
7500 AE Enschede
The Netherlands