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Statistical mechanics

We study non-equilibrium statistical mechanics experimentally. One model system that we have studied in detail during the past years is that of colloidal particles rotating in an optical vortex. In the figure the trajectories of many diffusing particles, subjected to an optical vortex trap are plotted. The particles that are within range of the optical trap are drawn to the ring-like trap, and then rotate along the perimeter of the ring.

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