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Reversible first-order transition in Pauli percolation


Percolation plays an important role in fields and phenomena as diverse as the study of social networks, the dynamics of epidemics, the robustness of electricity grids, conduction in disordered media, and geometric properties in statistical physics. We analyze a new percolation problem in which the first-order nature of an equilibrium percolation transition can be established analytically and verified numerically. The rules for this site percolation model are physical and very simple, requiring only the introduction of a weight W(n)=n+1 for a cluster of size n. This establishes that a discontinuous percolation transition can occur with qualitatively more local interactions than in all currently considered examples of explosive percolation; and that, unlike these, it can be reversible. This greatly extends both the applicability of such percolation models in principle and their reach in practice.

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