We describe a new mechanism for Lévy walks, explaining the recently observed superdiffusion of swarming bacteria. The model hinges on several key physical properties of bacteria, such as an elongated cell shape, self-propulsion, and a collectively generated regular vortexlike flow. In particular, chaos and Lévy walking are a consequence of group dynamics. The model explains how cells can fine-tune the geometric properties of their trajectories. Experiments confirm the spectrum of these patterns in fluorescently labeled swarming Bacillus subtilis.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Physics and Astronomy(all)