Diffusion with Stochastic Resetting

Martin R. Evans 1, Satya N. Majumdar 2

Physical Review Letters 106 (2011) 160601

We study simple diffusion where a particle stochastically resets to its initial position at a constant rate r. A finite resetting rate leads to a nonequilibrium stationary state with non-Gaussian fluctuations for the particle position. We also show that the mean time to find a stationary target by a diffusive searcher is finite and has a minimum value at an optimal resetting rate r^*. Resetting also alters fundamentally the late time decay of the survival probability of a stationary target when there are multiple searchers: while the typical survival probability decays exponentially with time, the average decays as a power law with an exponent depending continuously on the density of searchers.

  • 1. SUPA, School of Physics, University of Edinburgh,
  • 2. Laboratoire de Physique Théorique et Modèles Statistiques (LPTMS),
    CNRS : UMR8626 – Université Paris XI - Paris Sud