Straightening of Thermal Fluctuations in Semi-Flexible Polymers by Applied Tension
We investigate the propagation of a suddenly applied tension along a thermally excited semiflexible polymer using analytical approximations, scaling arguments, and numerical simulation. This problem is inherently nonlinear. We find subdiffusive propagation with a dynamical exponent of 1/4. By generalizing the internal elasticity, we show that tense strings exhibit qualitatively different tension profiles and propagation with an exponent of 1/2.