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Out-of-equilibrium dynamics of two interacting optically-trapped particles

Victor S. Dotsenko, Alberto Imparato, Pascal Viot, Gleb Oshanin

SciPost Phys. Core 6, 056 (2023) · published 17 August 2023


We present a theoretical analysis of a non-equilibrium dynamics in a model system consisting of two particles which move randomly on a plane. The two particles interact via a harmonic potential, experience their own (independent from each other) noises characterized by two different temperatures $T_1$ and $T_2$, and each particle is being held by its own optical tweezer. Such a system with two particles coupled by hydrodynamic interactions was previously realised experimentally in Bérut et al. [EPL 107, 60004 (2014)], and the difference between two temperatures has been achieved by exerting an additional noise on either of the tweezers. Framing the dynamics in terms of two coupled over-damped Langevin equations, we show that the system reaches a non-equilibrium steady-state with non-zero (for $T_1 \neq T_2$) probability currents that possess non-zero curls. As a consequence, in this system the particles are continuously spinning around their centers of mass in a completely synchronized way - the curls of currents at the instantaneous positions of two particles have the same magnitude and sign. Moreover, we demonstrate that the components of currents of two particles are strongly correlated and undergo a rotational motion along closed elliptic orbits.

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