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Journal Article

Stable swarming using adaptive long-range interactions

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Gorbonos, D., & Gov, N. S. (2017). Stable swarming using adaptive long-range interactions. Physical Review E, 95(4): 042405. doi:10.1103/PhysRevE.95.042405.

Cite as: https://hdl.handle.net/21.11116/0000-0005-A515-9
Sensory mechanisms in biology, from cells to humans, have the property of adaptivity, whereby the response produced by the sensor is adapted to the overall amplitude of the signal, reducing the sensitivity in the presence of strong stimulus, while increasing it when it is weak. This property is inherently energy consuming and a manifestation of the nonequilibrium nature of living organisms. We explore here how adaptivity affects the effective forces that organisms feel due to others in the context of a uniform swarm, in both two and three dimensions. The interactions between the individuals are taken to be attractive and long-range and of power-law form. We find that the effects of adaptivity inside the swarm are dramatic, where the effective forces decrease (or remain constant) with increasing swarm density. Linear stability analysis demonstrates how this property prevents collapse (Jeans instability), when the forces are adaptive. Adaptivity therefore endows swarms with a natural mechanism for self-stabilization.