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Self-organization without heat: the geometric ratchet effect

MPS-Authors
http://pubman.mpdl.mpg.de/cone/persons/resource/persons49233

Smerlak,  Matteo
Microscopic Quantum Structure & Dynamics of Spacetime, AEI-Golm, MPI for Gravitational Physics, Max Planck Society;

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Fulltext (public)

1206.3441
(Preprint), 244KB

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There is no public supplementary material available
Citation

Smerlak, M., & Youssef, A. (in preparation). Self-organization without heat: the geometric ratchet effect.


Cite as: http://hdl.handle.net/11858/00-001M-0000-000E-E9D5-8
Abstract
We point out a surprising feature of diffusion in inhomogeneous media: under suitable conditions, the rectification of the Brownian paths by a diffusivity gradient can result in initially spread tracers spontaneously concentrating. This "geometric ratchet effect" demonstrates that, in violation of the classical statements of the second law of (non-equilibrium) thermodynamics, self-organization can take place in thermodynamic systems at local equilibrium without heat being produced or exchanged with the environment. We stress the role of Bayesian priors in a suitable reformulation of the second law accommodating this geometric ratchet effect.