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Friday, December 3, 1999
Physics Building, Room 204
Note special time.
Prof. Sid Redner
[Host: E. Kolomeisky]
"Aggregation Kinetics in Gelation, Traffic, Wealth, and other Everyday Phenomena"
In aggregation, clusters meet and irreversibly merge so that their
average size grows continuously with time. This process describes, for
example, making of jello and yogurt, raindrop formation in clouds, and the
mass distribution of stars. I will present an elementary overview of cluster
evolution in such aggregating systems. I begin by outlining the mean-field
theory of aggregation and showing how scaling provides basic insights into
long-time behavior. I will then discuss the intriguing relation between the
cluster-size distribution and the first-passage probability of a random walk.
Finally, I will discuss recent applications to traffic clustering and the
distribution of wealth.
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