Ordering of two-dimensional crystals confined in strips of finite width

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2007
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Ricci, Andrea
Sengupta, Surajit
Binder, Kurt
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Monte Carlo simulations are used to study the effect of confinement on a crystal of point particles interacting with an inverse power law potential proportional to r(-12) in d=2 dimensions. This system can describe colloidal particles at the air-water interface, a model system for experimental study of two-dimensional melting. It is shown that the state of the system (a strip of width D) depends very sensitively on the precise boundary conditions at the two "walls" providing the confinement. If one uses a corrugated boundary commensurate with the order of the bulk triangular crystalline structure, both orientational order and positional order is enhanced, and such surface-induced order persists near the boundaries also at temperatures where the system in the bulk is in its fluid state. However, using smooth repulsive boundaries as walls providing the confinement, only the orientational order is enhanced, but positional (quasi-)long range order is destroyed: The mean-square displacement of two particles n lattice parameters apart in the y direction along the walls then crosses over from the logarithmic increase (characteristic for d=2) to a linear increase with n (characteristic for d=1). The strip then exhibits a vanishing shear modulus. These results are interpreted in terms of a phenomenological harmonic theory. Also the effect of incommensurability of the strip width D with the triangular lattice structure is discussed, and a comparison with surface effects on phase transitions in simple Ising and XY models is made.

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530 Physik
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hard-disk system, bond-orientational order, 2 dimensions, melting transition, phase-transitions, molecular-dynamics, colloidal crystals
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ISO 690RICCI, Andrea, Peter NIELABA, Surajit SENGUPTA, Kurt BINDER, 2007. Ordering of two-dimensional crystals confined in strips of finite width. In: Physical Review E. 2007, 75(1), 011405. Available under: doi: 10.1103/PhysRevE.75.011405
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@article{Ricci2007Order-846,
  year={2007},
  doi={10.1103/PhysRevE.75.011405},
  title={Ordering of two-dimensional crystals confined in strips of finite width},
  number={1},
  volume={75},
  journal={Physical Review E},
  author={Ricci, Andrea and Nielaba, Peter and Sengupta, Surajit and Binder, Kurt},
  note={Article Number: 011405}
}
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