Projects per year
Recent theories predict phase separation among orientationally disordered active particles whose propulsion speed decreases rapidly enough with density. Coarse-grained models of this process show time-reversal symmetry (detailed balance) to be restored for uniform states, but broken by gradient terms; hence, detailed-balance violation is strongly coupled to interfacial phenomena. To explore the subtle generic physics resulting from such coupling, we here introduce ‘Active Model B’. This is a scalar φ4 field theory (or phase-field model) that minimally violates detailed balance via a leading-order square-gradient term. We find that this additional term has modest effects on coarsening dynamics, but alters the static phase diagram by creating a jump in (thermodynamic) pressure across flat interfaces. Both results are surprising, since interfacial phenomena are always strongly implicated in coarsening dynamics but are, in detailed-balance systems, irrelevant for phase equilibria.
|Number of pages||9|
|Publication status||Published - 10 Jul 2014|
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- 1 Finished
Design Principles for New Soft Materials
Cates, M., Allen, R., Clegg, P., Evans, M., MacPhee, C., Marenduzzo, D. & Poon, W.
7/12/11 → 6/06/17
- School of Physics and Astronomy - Personal Chair of Biological Physics
- Centre for Engineering Biology
Person: Academic: Research Active
Mike Cates, FRS
- School of Physics and Astronomy - UoE Honorary staff
Person: Affiliated Independent Researcher