We illustrate through experiments, numerics, and theory the rich dynamics at play when particles are moving near surfaces. We demonstrate that wavy surfaces induce helical motions which can lead to persistent drift perpendicular to the particle’s motion. We explore a diverse range of physical systems, including particles sedimenting near corrugations, as well as the dynamics of tracer particles being advected in flows over these surfaces. Such dynamics are relevant to the behavior of many biological and physical systems, where common assumptions of smooth boundaries might not be consistent with the physical picture.
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