Measurement of Anomalous Diffusion Using Recurrent Neural Networks

Anomalous diffusion occurs in many physical and biological phenomena, when the growth of the mean squared displacement (MSD) with time has an exponent different from one. I will show that recurrent neural networks (RNN) can efficiently characterize anomalous diffusion by determining the exponent from a single short trajectory, outperforming the standard estimation based on the MSD when the available data points are limited, as is often the case in experiments. I will also present how the RNN can handle more complex tasks, for which there are no standard approaches. These consist in determining the anomalous diffusion exponent from a trajectory sampled at irregular times, and estimating the switching time and anomalous diffusion exponents of an intermittent system that switches between different kinds of anomalous diffusion. The method I will present is validated on experimental data obtained from sub-diffusive colloids trapped in speckle light fields and super-diffusive microswimmers.