On the number of intersections of self-repelling polymer chains
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We give a detailed analysis of the intersection properties of polymers. Using the renormalization group we provide a full crossover function for the dependence of the number of intersections in a single polymer on chain length and excluded volume strength. We compare our results with Monte-Carlo data and with exact calculations for a random walk, finding good agreement in all respects. Restricting to the vicinity of the eight ternary fixed points we also calculate the number of intersections between two chains placed at a fixed distance, including the two halves of a block-copolymer. The analysis of these systems confirms the interpretation of the different contributions to the number of intersections in a single chain. Due to the highly nontrivial character of the correlations in a polymer chain the correction exponents in both cases however are different. None of the results can be extracted from any Flory-type estimate.
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