Supersymmetry and Kramers' reaction rate

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In Brinckman's generalization of Kramers' expression for the reaction rate to overcome a high barrier in the large friction limit assumptions about local equilibrium in the wells and the current density at the top of the barrier were made which have been questioned by various authors. It is shown that supersymmetric quantum mechanics can be used to justify Brinckman's result. Exact results for a simple model potential are compared with the asymptotic rate formula.

Dedicated to Professor W. Brenig on the occasion of his 60th birthday