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Issue 5, 2018
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Criticality of the zero-temperature jamming transition probed by self-propelled particles

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Abstract

We perform simulations of athermal systems of self-propelled particles (SPPs) interacting via harmonic repulsion in the vicinity of the zero-temperature jamming transition at point J. Every particle is propelled by a constant force f pointing to a randomly assigned and fixed direction. When f is smaller than the yield force fy, the system is statically jammed. We find that fy increases with packing fraction and exhibits finite size scaling, implying the criticality of point J. When f > fy, SPPs flow forever and their velocities satisfy the k-Gamma distribution. Velocity distributions at various packing fractions and f collapse when the particle velocity is scaled by the average velocity [v with combining macron], suggesting that [v with combining macron] is a reasonable quantity to characterize the response to f. We thus define a response function R(ϕ,f) = [v with combining macron](ϕ,f)/f. The function exhibits critical scaling nicely, implying again the criticality of point J. Our analysis and results indicate that systems of SPPs behave analogically to sheared systems, although their driving mechanisms are apparently distinct.

Graphical abstract: Criticality of the zero-temperature jamming transition probed by self-propelled particles

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Publication details

The article was received on 22 Sep 2017, accepted on 28 Dec 2017 and first published on 02 Jan 2018


Article type: Paper
DOI: 10.1039/C7SM01909B
Citation: Soft Matter, 2018,14, 853-860
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    Criticality of the zero-temperature jamming transition probed by self-propelled particles

    Q. Liao and N. Xu, Soft Matter, 2018, 14, 853
    DOI: 10.1039/C7SM01909B

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