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Kenyon College
Kenyon Physics
Project Contributors:
Benjamin Hildebrand - '03 Kenyon College
Daniel Kiepfer - '03 Kenyon College
Timothy Sullivan - Associate Professor of Physics at Kenyon College

Our goal is to be able to simulate the motion of colloidal particles in order to help us understand recent experiments. A primary component of that motion is called "Brownian motion", the apparently random motion experienced by any small particle immersed in a fluid. So our first goal is to simulate Brownian Motion correctly.

For an introduction to Brownian motion on the Web, some useful links can be found under 'Links'. A useful Java applet that illustrates the fundamentals of Brownian motion is included, giving a good visual demonstration of the motion. A nice treatment of Brownian motion is also given in W.B. Russel, D.A. Saville, and W.R. Schowalter's, "Colloidal Dispersions" (Cambridge University Press, Cambridge, 1989).

While we know that Brownian motion is due to impacts of the fluid molecules, it is useful to treat the motion as random and adapt a statistical approach to the motion. For an in-depth discussion of the mathematics and random number generation used, as well as results from our work, it is best to start at the 'Theory' section and work your way down the navigation bar.