We present a general geometrical approach to the problem of escape from a metastable state in the presence of noise. The accompanying analysis leads to a simple condition, based on the norm of the drift field, for determining whether caustic singularities alter the escape trajectories when detailed balance is absent. We apply our methods to systems lacking detailed balance, including a nanomagnet with a biaxial magnetic anisotropy and subject to a spin-transfer torque. The approach described within allows determination of the regions of experimental parameter space that admit caustics.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Statistical and Nonlinear Physics
- Statistics and Probability
- Condensed Matter Physics