Applicability of effective pair potentials for active Brownian particles

  • Markus Rein
  • Thomas SpeckEmail author
Regular Article
Part of the following topical collections:
  1. Nonequilibrium Collective Dynamics in Condensed and Biological Matter


We have performed a case study investigating a recently proposed scheme to obtain an effective pair potential for active Brownian particles (Farage et al., Phys. Rev. E 91, 042310 (2015)). Applying this scheme to the Lennard-Jones potential, numerical simulations of active Brownian particles are compared to simulations of passive Brownian particles interacting by the effective pair potential. Analyzing the static pair correlations, our results indicate a limited range of activity parameters (speed and orientational correlation time) for which we obtain quantitative, or even qualitative, agreement. Moreover, we find a qualitatively different behavior for the virial pressure even for small propulsion speeds. Combining these findings we conclude that beyond linear response active particles exhibit genuine non-equilibrium properties that cannot be captured by effective pair interaction alone.

Graphical abstract


Topical Issue: Nonequilibrium Collective Dynamics in Condensed and Biological Matter 


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Copyright information

© EDP Sciences, SIF, Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 2016

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Institut für PhysikJohannes Gutenberg-Universität MainzMainzGermany

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