ICAMS / Interdisciplinary Centre for Advanced Materials Simulation


Scaling of the memory function and Brownian motion

G.R. Kneller, G. Sutmann.

Journal of Chemical Physics, 120, 1667, (2004)


It has been recently shown that the velocity autocorrelation function of a tracer particle immersed in a simple liquid scales approximately with the inverse of its mass [J. Chem. Phys. 118, 5283 (2003)]. With increasing mass the amplitude is systematically reduced and the velocity autocorrelation function tends to a slowly decaying exponential, which is characteristic for Brownian motion. We give here an analytical proof for this behavior and comment on the usual explanation for Brownian dynamics which is based on the assumption that the memory function is proportional to a Dirac distribution. We also derive conditions for Brownian dynamics of a tracer particle which are entirely based on properties of its memory function.

Keyword(s): Brownian motion; scaling phenomena; fluctuations
DOI: 10.1063/1.1642599
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