News Stories

Highlights from our First In-Person Research Talk

October 19, 2021

Our first in-person research talk of the school year was a success! The Tab Lab presented the Diffusive Motion of Jumping Beans. Devon McKee, SU CPSC student, presented his research conducted under the direction of Dr. Pasha Tabatabai.


Mexican jumping beans are seed pods containing the larva of a moth and appear to jump around at random. This motion is driven by larval body motion, making these jumping beans a simple representation of an "active particle." We quantify the motion of these beans using video recording and image analysis and find that their average motion is described by diffusive motion. We further investigate the statistical behavior of individual jumping events and use this information to build a computational simulation that mimics jumping bean motion.