Navigation Links
Outside a vacuum: Model predicts movement of charged particles in complex media
Date:11/28/2012

Picture two charged particles in a vacuum. Thanks to laws of elementary electrostatics, we can easily calculate the force these particles exert upon one another, and therefore predict their movements.

Submerge those particles in a simple medium say, water and the calculation grows more complex. The charged particles' movements influence the water, which in turn may slow, speed, or otherwise alter the particles' paths. In this environment a prediction must also consider the water's reaction, or its dielectric response.

But in real biological and material systems, media are also complex: plant cells and blood cells, for instance, are made up of several media and may be oddly shaped. This heterogeneity has made predicting the movement of charged particles in complex environments extremely challenging for theoretical physicists.

Now researchers at Northwestern University's McCormick School of Engineering have developed a model that can predict the reactions of charged particles in any media. Their computational discovery, which takes cues from nature, could find applications in biology, medicine, and synthetic materials research.

The model is the culmination of seven years of work by Monica Olvera de la Cruz, Lawyer Taylor Professor of Materials Science and Engineering, Chemistry, and (by courtesy) Chemical and Biological Engineering at the McCormick School of Engineering, with partners from Arizona State University.

Creating molecular simulations in heterogeneous media requires two steps: measuring the effects of the medium's dielectric response on the charged particles and measuring the effects of the charged particles on the medium's dielectric response. In previous attempts at such simulations, models treated the two calculations separately, completing one set of calculations before turning to the next. This process required solving a differential equation that governs the motion of the charged particles namely, the Poisson equation at each step of the simulation.

The Northwestern researchers have developed a new, faster way that avoids the Poisson equation entirely. Using insight gleamed from nature, they have reframed the electrostatic problem as an energy-minimizing problem.

"Nature doesn't wait to figure out the response of the medium in order to move the charged particles, nor does it wait to position the particles before determining the response of the medium," said Olvera de la Cruz. "The dielectric response and the motion of the charged particles are inherently coupled, and our model mirrors that."

The researchers formulated a new function that gives the correct response of the medium and produces the true energy of the charged particles. This enabled them to update the position of the charged particles and the medium's response in the same simulation time step. Within this theoretical framework and simulation design, they were able to attack problems that were previously intractable.


'/>"/>

Contact: Megan Fellman
fellman@northwestern.edu
847-491-3115
Northwestern University
Source:Eurekalert

Related biology news :

1. Fat outside of arteries may influence onset of coronary artery disease
2. Hyenas that think outside the box solve problems faster
3. First model of how buds grow into leaves
4. Parkinsons disease stopped in animal model
5. New method for estimating parameters may boost biological models
6. Bone marrow transplant arrests symptoms in model of Rett syndrome
7. 3-D RNA modeling opens scientific doors
8. NCEAS researchers offer new ecological model for deep-water oil spills
9. Patel recognized with NSF Career Award for computer-modeling research on cell membranes
10. Model forecasts long-term impacts of forest land-use decisions
11. A cells first steps: Building a model to explain how cells grow
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
(Date:12/15/2016)... 2016   WaferGen Bio-systems, Inc. (NASDAQ: ... announced today that on December 13, 2016, it received ... Nasdaq Stock Market LLC which acknowledged that, as of ... common stock had been at $1.00 or greater for ... with Listing Rule 5550(a)(2) of the Nasdaq Stock Market. ...
(Date:12/15/2016)... HILLS, Mich. , Dec. 15, 2016  There ... unlocking car doors or starting the engine. Continental will ... in Las Vegas . Through the ... (Passive Start and Entry) and biometric elements, the international ... field of vehicle personalization and authentication. "The ...
(Date:12/8/2016)... , Dec. 8, 2016 Market Research Future published a ... The global Mobile Biometric Security and Service Market is expected to ... 2022. Market Highlights: ... , Mobile Biometric Security ... to the increasing need of authentication and security from unwanted cyber ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):
(Date:1/19/2017)... and GAITHERSBURG, Md. , ... PIP) and Altimmune, Inc., a privately-held immunotherapeutics company ... a definitive agreement for the merger of PharmAthene ... investors include Novartis Venture Fund, HealthCap, Truffle Capital ... a fully-integrated and diversified immunotherapeutics company with four ...
(Date:1/19/2017)... ... January 18, 2017 , ... The American Medical ... update its Data Sharing Policy. Specifically, the nation’s leading informatics experts, said data ... the existing policy. AMIA recommended that NIH earmark funding for researchers to produce ...
(Date:1/19/2017)... ... January 19, 2017 , ... DaVita Clinical ... spectrum of drug and device development, and Prism Clinical Research , a ... today announced Verified Clinical Trials (VCT) has been selected by both ...
(Date:1/19/2017)... , Jan. 18, 2017 Acupath Laboratories, ... announces the formation of an Executive Committee that will ... beyond. John Cucci , a 15-year ... from Director of Business Development to Chief Sales ... Mr. Cucci served in senior sales leadership roles at ...
Breaking Biology Technology: