Cooperative Transport in a Multi-Particle, Multi-Dimensional Flashing Ratchet

Ofer Kedem, Emily A. Weiss*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

2 Scopus citations


Random and undirected forces are rectified in biological and synthetic systems using ratcheting mechanisms, which employ periodic asymmetric potentials and nonequilibrium conditions to produce useful transport. The density of motors or transported particles is known to strongly affect the nature and efficacy of transport in biological systems, as well as in synthetic ratchets and active swimmer systems. While experimental ratchet implementations typically employ potentials varying in two dimensions (2D), the role of the density of interacting particles in such a system has not been modeled. Prompted by experimental observations and building upon previous simulations, this paper describes the ratcheting process of interacting particles in a 2D flashing ratchet, studied using classical simulations. Increased particle density is found to allow effective ratcheting at higher driving frequencies, compared to the low-density or non-interacting case. High densities also produce a new ratcheting mode at low driving frequencies, based on independent trajectories of high kinetic-energy particles, more than doubling transport at low frequencies.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)6913-6921
Number of pages9
JournalJournal of Physical Chemistry C
Issue number11
StatePublished - Mar 21 2019

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Electronic, Optical and Magnetic Materials
  • Energy(all)
  • Physical and Theoretical Chemistry
  • Surfaces, Coatings and Films

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