Europhys. Lett.
Volume 60, Number 2, October 2002
Page(s) 227 - 233
Section Electromagnetism, optics, acoustics, heat transfert, classical mechanics and fluid dynamics
Published online 01 October 2002
DOI: 10.1209/epl/i2002-00342-y

Europhys. Lett., 60 (2) , pp. 227-233 (2002)

Drift- or fluctuation-induced ordering and self-organization in driven many-particle systems

D. Helbing1, 2 and T. Platkowski3, 1

1  Institute for Economics and Traffic, Dresden University of Technology 01062 Dresden, Germany
2  CCM-Centro de Ciências Matemáticas, Universidade da Madeira Campus Universitário da Penteada - 9000-390 Funchal, Madeira, Portugal
3  Department of Mathematics, Informatics and Mechanics, University of Warsaw Banacha 2, 02-097 Warsaw, Poland

(Received 18 April 2002; accepted in final form 23 July 2002)

According to empirical observations, some pattern formation phenomena in driven many-particle systems are more pronounced in the presence of a certain noise level. We investigate this phenomenon of fluctuation-driven ordering with a cellular-automaton model of interactive motion in space and find an optimal noise strength, while order breaks down at high(er) fluctuation levels. Additionally, we discuss the phenomenon of noise- and drift-induced self-organization in systems that would show disorder in the absence of fluctuations. In the future, related studies may have applications to the control of many-particle systems such as the efficient separation of particles. The rather general formulation of our model in the spirit of game theory may allow to shed some light on several different kinds of noise-induced ordering phenomena observed in physical, chemical, biological, and socio-economic systems (e.g., attractive and repulsive agglomeration, or segregation).

47.54.+r - Pattern selection; pattern formation.
05.40.-a - Fluctuation phenomena, random processes, noise, and Brownian motion.
47.62.+q - Flow control.

© EDP Sciences 2002