Stochastic Search with Poisson and Deterministic Resetting


We investigate a stochastic search process in one, two, and three dimensions in which $N$ diffusing searchers that all start at $x_{0}$ seek a target at the origin. Each of the searchers is also reset to its starting point, either with rate $r$, or deterministically, with a reset time $T$. In one dimension and for a small number of searchers, the search time and the search cost are minimized at a non-zero optimal reset rate (or time), while for sufficiently large $N$, resetting always hinders the search. In general, a single searcher leads to the minimum search cost in one, two, and three dimensions. When the resetting is deterministic, several unexpected feature arise for $N$ searchers, including the search time being independent of $T$ for $1/T\rightarrow 0$ and the search cost being independent of $N$ over a suitable range of $N$. Moreover, deterministic resetting typically leads to a lower search cost than in stochastic resetting.

J. Stat. Mech. 083401 (2016)