We discuss the directional motion of an elastic three-sphere micromachine in which the spheres are in equilibrium with independent heat baths having different temperatures. Even in the absence of prescribed motion of springs, such a micromachine can gain net motion purely because of thermal fluctuations. A relation connecting the average velocity and the temperatures of the spheres is analytically obtained. This velocity can also be expressed in terms of the average heat flows in the steady state. Our model suggests a new mechanism for the locomotion of micromachines in nonequilibrium biological systems.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- General Physics and Astronomy