Dynamical heterogeneity in a glass-forming ideal gas.

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We conduct a numerical study of the dynamical behavior of a system of three-dimensional "crosses," particles that consist of three mutually perpendicular line segments of length sigma rigidly joined at their midpoints. In an earlier study [W. van Ketel, Phys. Rev. Lett. 94, 135703 (2005)] we showed that this model has the structural properties of an ideal gas, yet the dynamical properties of a strong glass former. In the present paper we report an extensive study of the dynamical heterogeneities that appear in this system in the regime where glassy behavior sets in. On the one hand, we find that the propensity of a particle to diffuse is determined by the structure of its local environment. The local density around mobile particles is significantly less than the average density, but there is little clustering of mobile particles, and the clusters observed tend to be small. On the other hand, dynamical susceptibility results indicate that a large dynamical length scale develops even at moderate densities. This suggests that propensity and other mobility measures are an incomplete measure of the dynamical length scales in this system.






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Charbonneau, Patrick, Chinmay Das and Daan Frenkel (2008). Dynamical heterogeneity in a glass-forming ideal gas. Phys Rev E Stat Nonlin Soft Matter Phys, 78(1 Pt 1). p. 011505. 10.1103/PhysRevE.78.011505 Retrieved from https://hdl.handle.net/10161/12591.

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Patrick Charbonneau

Professor of Chemistry

Professor Charbonneau studies soft matter. His work combines theory and simulation to understand the glass problem, protein crystallization, microphase formation, and colloidal assembly in external fields.

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