Tuesday, June 20, 2017

Brownian dynamics simulations to explore experimental microsphere diffusion with optical tweezers

Manuel Pancorbo, Miguel A. Rubio, P. Domínguez-García

We develop two-dimensional Brownian dynamics simulations to examine the motion of disks under thermal fluctuations and Hookean forces. Our simulations are designed to be experimental-like, since the experimental conditions define the available time-scales which characterize the solution of Langevin equations. To define the fluid model and methodology, we explain the basics of the theory of Brownian motion applicable to quasi-twodimensional diffusion of optically-trapped microspheres. Using the data produced by the simulations, we propose an alternative methodology to calculate diffusion coefficients. We obtain that, using typical input parameters in video-microscopy experiments, the averaged values of the diffusion coefficient differ from the theoretical one less than a 1%.

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