Can a Lamb Reach a Haven Before Being Eaten by Diffusing Lions?

Alan Gabel 1, Satya N. Majumdar 2, Nagendra K. Panduranga 1, S. Redner 1

Journal of Statistical Mechanics: Theory and Experiment (2012) P05011

We study the survival of a single diffusing lamb on the positive half line in the presence of N diffusing lions that all start at the same position L to the right of the lamb and a haven at x=0. If the lamb reaches this haven before meeting any lion, the lamb survives. We investigate the survival probability of the lamb, S_N(x,L), as a function of N and the respective initial positions of the lamb and the lions, x and L. We determine S_N(x,L) analytically for the special cases of N=1 and N--->oo. For large but finite N, we determine the unusual asymptotic form whose leading behavior is S_N(z)\simN^{-z^2}, with z=x/L. Simulations of the capture process very slowly converge to this asymptotic prediction as N reaches 10^{500}.

  • 1. Center for Polymer Studies (CPS),
    Boston University
  • 2. Laboratoire de Physique Théorique et Modèles Statistiques (LPTMS),
    CNRS : UMR8626 – Université Paris XI - Paris Sud