What is it about?

The crossing of a potential energy barrier under the influence of noise is the most basic step in a chemical reaction. The crossing, caused by thermal noise was studied long ago by Kramers, Eyring and others. Currently noises other than thermal too are attracting attention. This is because in many biological systems, active noise too is present, in addition to thermal noise. The paper considers the rate of crossing the barrier under the influence of two noises. viz., thermal and poisson white noise. The theoretical results are compared with simulations. The main additional feature in presence of the second noise is that the rate depends not just on the height of the barrier, but on the shape of the whole barrier.

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Why is it important?

The paper shows how the rate of crossing can be obtained in a simple fashion. It is possible to engineer such noises in the laboratory and hence verify the predictions of the theory experimentally.


The approach presented is extremely simple and elegant (in my opinion) and should find its way into books on barrier crossing, as the results are mostly analytical and easy to understand.

KIzhakeyil Lukose Sebastian

Read the Original

This page is a summary of: Solution to the Kramers barrier crossing problem caused by two noises: Thermal noise and Poisson white noise, The Journal of Chemical Physics, July 2021, American Institute of Physics, DOI: 10.1063/5.0056506.
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