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On the Diusion of Physical Processes in Radially Distributed Systems

Alfred Hubler and Sam Foreman

Abstract We begin by studying the diusion process on a uniform angular distribution of points, whose radial density varies as r12 . We then go on to investigate how the diusion rate (namely, the movement of the center of heat) varies with dierent distribution functions. In order to make our model realistic, we proceed to transfer the substance to all neighbors (points) within a predened, xed radius. We refer to those points for which our substance (heat, infection, sound, etc.), has already diused to as being active. This process runs for a xed number of iterations, where each iteration randomly selects a point that is active, and again diuses to all neighbors within the given radius. In order to get a better understanding of the chaotic dynamics exhibited by our system, we also compute and plot the centroid for each iteration. The goal of this research is to perform a dimensional reduction from a system with multiple variables into a lower-dimensional description with a smaller number of free parameters.

Introduction
Inverse Square Distribution
The program begins by dening a xed radius (presently, 0.20 units), and then goes on to construct arrays and r which are distributed uniformly, and as the inverse square of the radius, respectively. Next, we select a point (x, y ) ! (r, ) at random which we use as our initial source (~ r0 ). The system then begins to propagate radially by distributing the heat to all neighboring points within the given radius (r = 0.20) (i.e. a point P is dened as active if k~ r (P ) ~ r0 k r ) This is represented graphically by coloring the active points red. Next, we compute the centroid for a given iteration by taking the weighted average of the active points distance from the previous iterations centroid, and marking it with a blue star. Finally, we create a plot of the system for each time step, to show how our system evolves in time. This process is then repeated, for N = 50 iterations. For the last iteration, we compute the nal center of mass, marked by a green star. Finally, we run a statistical analysis on both the angular and radial distribution of points, and plot these accordingly. We complete this analysis by creating a bestt polynomial for our actual points, and compute the absolute error between this best-t polynomial, and the expected results, as shown.

Figure 1: Angular Distribution

Figure 2: Radial Distribution

i Where the angular distribution plot represents i = tan 1 ( x yi ) vs. (xi , yi ), and the radial distribution histogram represents the number of points vs. radial distance.

Note that the physical quantity of interest is the rate of diusion, and in particular, the movement of the center of active points, ~ rcm relative to the center of the whole system, dened as the sum of each points distance from the origin, over the total ~ cm . number of points, and denoted by R

We plot this as a function of iteration number, k , as shown.

Figure 3: k~ rcm

~ cm k vs. k R

We immediately see that this relative distance decreases rapidly with each iteration, which implies that our system has a tendency to distribute heat in such a way that the center of heat converges towards the center of mass.

Uniform Distribution
We now switch our attention to the case in which points (xi , yi ) are uniformly distributed over the unit interval. The setup is much the same, where we select a point at random and go on to distribute heat radially to all points within the xed radius, r . As before, we plot the center of heat for each iteration, and record its relative distance from the center of mass of the system, which is shown as a function of iteration number, below.

Figure 4: k~ rcm 3

~ cm k vs. k R