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1064-5462
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Artificial Life

Fall 2015, Vol. 21, No. 4, Pages 481-500
(doi: 10.1162/ARTL_a_00188)
© 2015 Massachusetts Institute of Technology
Cell-Division Behavior in a Heterogeneous Swarm Environment
Article PDF (1.41 MB)
Abstract

We present a system of virtual particles that interact using simple kinetic rules. It is known that heterogeneous mixtures of particles can produce particularly interesting behaviors. Here we present a two-species three-dimensional swarm in which a behavior emerges that resembles cell division. We show that the dividing behavior exists across a narrow but finite band of parameters and for a wide range of population sizes. When executed in a two-dimensional environment the swarm's characteristics and dynamism manifest differently. In further experiments we show that repeated divisions can occur if the system is extended by a biased equilibrium process to control the split of populations. We propose that this repeated division behavior provides a simple model for cell-division mechanisms and is of interest for the formation of morphological structure and to swarm robotics.