Abstract:
We demonstrate that absorbing phase transitions in one dimension may be induced by the dynamics of a single site. As an example we consider a one-dimensional model of diffusing particles, where a single site at the boundary evolves according to the dynamics of a contact process. As the rate for offspring production at this site is varied, the model exhibits a phase transition from a fluctuating active phase into an absorbing state. The universal properties of the transition are analyzed by numerical simulations and approximation techniques.

Abstract:
We study the symmetry of large deviation functions associated with time-integrated currents in Markov pure jump processes. One current known to have this symmetry is the fluctuating entropy production and this is the content of the fluctuation theorem. Here we obtain a necessary condition in order to have a current different from entropy with a symmetric large deviation function. This condition is related to degeneracies in the set of increments associated with fundamental cycles from Schnakenberg network theory. Moreover we consider 4-states systems where we explicitly show that non-entropic time-integrated currents can be symmetric. We also show that these new symmetries, as is the case of the fluctuation theorem, are related to time-reversal. However, this becomes apparent only when stochastic trajectories are appropriately grouped together.

Abstract:
So far, feedback-driven systems have been discussed using (i) measurement and control, (ii) a tape interacting with a system or (iii) by identifying an implicit Maxwell demon in steady state transport. We derive the corresponding second laws from one master fluctuation theorem and discuss their relationship. In particular, we show that both the entropy production involving mutual information between system and controller and the one involving a Shannon entropy difference of an information reservoir like a tape carry an extra term different from the usual current times affinity. We thus generalize stochastic thermodynamics to the presence of an information reservoir.

Abstract:
We study models for surface growth with a wetting and a roughening transition using simple and pair mean-field approximations. The simple mean-field equations are solved exactly and they predict the roughening transition and the correct growth exponents in a region of the phase diagram. The pair mean-field equations, which are solved numerically, show a better accordance with numerical simulation and correctly predicts a growing interface with constant velocity at the moving phase. Also, when detailed balance is fulfilled, the pair mean field becomes the exact solution of the model.

Abstract:
For sensory networks, we determine the rate with which they acquire information about the changing external conditions. Comparing this rate with the thermodynamic entropy production that quantifies the cost of maintaining the network, we find that there is no universal bound restricting the rate of obtaining information to be less than this thermodynamic cost. These results are obtained within a general bipartite model consisting of a stochastically changing environment that affects the instantaneous transition rates within the system. Moreover, they are illustrated with a simple four-states model motivated by cellular sensing. On the technical level, we obtain an upper bound on the rate of mutual information analytically and calculate this rate with a numerical method that estimates the entropy of a time-series generated with a simulation.

Abstract:
We revisit the scaling properties of a model for non-equilibrium wetting [Phys. Rev. Lett. 79, 2710 (1997)], correcting previous estimates of the critical exponents and providing a complete scaling scheme. Moreover, we investigate a special point in the phase diagram, where the model exhibits a roughening transition related to directed percolation. We argue that in the vicinity of this point evaporation from the middle of plateaus can be interpreted as an external field in the language of directed percolation. This analogy allows us to compute the crossover exponent and to predict the form of the phase transition line close to its terminal point.

Abstract:
We study a simplified model for pulsed laser deposition [Phys. Rev. Lett. {\bf 87}, 135701 (2001)] by rate equations. We consider a set of equations, where islands are assumed to be point-like, as well as an improved one that takes the size of the islands into account. The first set of equations is solved exactly but its predictive power is restricted to a few pulses. The improved set of equations is integrated numerically, is in excellent agreement with simulations, and fully accounts for the crossover from continuous to pulsed deposition. Moreover, we analyze the scaling of the nucleation density and show numerical results indicating that a previously observed logarithmic scaling does not apply.

Abstract:
We study entropy production and fluctuation relations in the restricted solid-on-solid growth model, which is a microscopic realization of the KPZ equation. Solving the one dimensional model exactly on a particular line of the phase diagram we demonstrate that entropy production quantifies the distance from equilibrium. Moreover, as an example of a physically relevant current different from the entropy, we study the symmetry of the large deviation function associated with the interface height. In a special case of a system of length L=4 we find that the probability distribution of the variation of height has a symmetric large deviation function, displaying a symmetry different from the Gallavotti-Cohen symmetry.

Abstract:
We study in further detail particle models displaying a boundary-induced absorbing state phase transition [Phys. Rev. E. {\bf 65}, 046104 (2002) and Phys. Rev. Lett. {\bf 100}, 165701 (2008)] . These are one-dimensional systems consisting of a single site (the boundary) where creation and annihilation of particles occur and a bulk where particles move diffusively. We study different versions of these models, and confirm that, except for one exactly solvable bosonic variant exhibiting a discontinuous transition and trivial exponents, all the others display non-trivial behavior, with critical exponents differing from their mean-field values, representing a universality class. Finally, the relation of these systems with a $(0+1)$-dimensional non-Markovian process is discussed.

Abstract:
Biomolecular systems like molecular motors or pumps, transcription and translation machinery, and other enzymatic reactions can be described as Markov processes on a suitable network. We show quite generally that in a steady state the dispersion of observables like the number of consumed/produced molecules or the number of steps of a motor is constrained by the thermodynamic cost of generating it. An uncertainty $\epsilon$ requires at least a cost of $2k_BT/\epsilon^2$ independent of the time required to generate the output.