Atomic mechanism of vitrification process in simple monatomic nanoparticles *
Department of Physics, Institute of Technology, National University of HochiMinh City, 268 Ly Thuong Kiet Street, District 10, 84, HochiMinh City, Vietnam
Corresponding author: a email@example.com
Revised: 21 December 2010
Published online: 25 February 2011
Glass formation in simple monatomic nanoparticles has been studied by molecular dynamics simulations in spherical model with a free surface. Models have been obtained by cooling from the melt toward glassy state. Atomic mechanism of glass formation was monitored via spatio-temporal arrangement of solid-like and liquid-like atoms in nanoparticles. We use Lindemann freezing-like criterion for identification of solid-like atoms which occur randomly in supercooled region. Their number grows intensively with decreasing temperature and they form clusters. Subsequently, single percolation solid-like cluster occurs at temperature above the glass transition. Glass transition occurs when atoms aggregated into this single percolation cluster are in majority in the system to form relatively rigid glassy state. Solid-like domain is forming in the center of nanoparticles and grows outward to the surface. We found temperature dependence of potential energy, mean-squared displacement (MSD) of atoms, diffusion constant, incoherent intermediate scattering function, radial distribution function (RDF), local bond-pair orders detected by Honeycutt-Andersen analysis, radial density profile and radial atomic displacement distributions in nanoparticles. We found that liquid-like atoms in models obtained below glass transition have a tendency to concentrate in the surface layer of nanoparticles. However, they do not form a purely liquid-like surface layer coated nanoparticles.
© EDP Sciences, Società Italiana di Fisica, Springer-Verlag, 2011