Alim, Karen; Frey, Erwin
Shapes of Semiflexible Polymer Rings.
In: Physical Review Letters, Vol. 99: p. 198102
The shape of semiflexible polymer rings is studied over their whole range of flexibility. Investigating
the joint distribution of asphericity and the nature of asphericity as well as their respective averages, we
find two distinct shape regimes depending on the flexibility of the polymer. For a small perimeter to
persistence length the fluctuating rings exhibit only planar, elliptical configurations. At higher flexibilities
three-dimensional, crumpled structures arise. Analytic calculations confirm the qualitative behavior of the
averaged shape parameters and the elliptical shape in the stiff regime.