Efficiency of one-dimensional active transport conditioned on motility

Francesco Cagnetta, Emil Mallmin

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


By conditioning a stochastic process on the value of an observable, one obtains a new stochastic process with different properties. We apply this idea in the context of active matter, and condition interacting self-propelled particles on their individual motility. Using the effective process formalism from dynamical large deviations theory, we derive the interactions that actuate the imposed mobility against jamming interactions in two toy models---the totally asymmetric exclusion process and run-and-tumble particles, \emil{in the case of two or three particles}. We provide a framework which takes into account the energy-consumption required for self-propulsion, and address the question of how energy-efficient the emergent interactions are. Upon conditioning, run-and-tumble particles develop an alignment interaction and achieve a higher gain in efficiency than TASEP particles. A point of diminishing returns in efficiency is reached beyond a certain level of conditioning. With recourse to a general formula for the change in energy efficiency upon conditioning, we conclude that the most significant gains occur when there are large fluctuations in mobility to exploit. From a detailed comparison of the emergent effective interaction in a two- versus a three-body scenario, we discover evidence of a screening effect which suggests that conditioning can produce topological rather than metric interactions.
Original languageEnglish
Number of pages11
JournalPhysical Review E
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 26 Feb 2020


  • cond-mat.stat-mech

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