Modelling dissipation in statistical mechanics
The defining property of nonequilibrium processes - such as stretching RNA, dragging colloids or the many and varied things that go on inside cells to keep them going - is that they require energy input to be maintained and thus dissipate into the environment. In this talk I will line up the kinds of stochastic models that theorists have written down to describe such processes and fire some basic questions at them. Can commonly-used mathematical modelling procedures be justified on physical grounds? How do you know when the dynamics actually describes a dissipative system? Can you quantify the dissipation, and how does it compare with what you would measure experimentally?
This is a weekly series of informal talks given primarily by members of the soft condensed matter and statistical mechanics groups, but is also open to members of other groups and external visitors. The aim of the series is to promote discussion and learning of various topics at a level suitable to the broad background of the group. Everyone is welcome to attend..