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Title: Rationalizing the role of structural motif and underlying electronic structure in the finite temperature behavior of atomic clusters

Melting in finite size systems is an interesting but complex phenomenon. Many factors affect melting and owing to their interdependencies it is a challenging task to rationalize their roles in the phase transition. In this work, we demonstrate how structural motif of the ground state influences melting transition in small clusters. Here, we report a case with clusters of aluminum and gallium having same number of atoms, valence electrons, and similar structural motif of the ground state but drastically different melting temperatures. We have employed Born-Oppenheimer molecular dynamics to simulate the solid-like to liquid-like transition in these clusters. Our simulations have reproduced the experimental trends fairly well. Further, the detailed analysis of isomers has brought out the role of the ground state structure and underlying electronic structure in the finite temperature behavior of these clusters. For both clusters, isomers accessible before cluster melts have striking similarities and does have strong influence of the structural motif of the ground state. Further, the shape of the heat capacity curve is similar in both the cases but the transition is more spread over for Al{sub 36} which is consistent with the observed isomerization pattern. Our simulations also suggest a way to characterize transitionmore » region on the basis of accessibility of the ground state at a specific temperature.« less
Authors:
;  [1]
  1. Center of Excellence in Scientific Computing and Physical and Materials Chemistry Division, CSIR-National Chemical Laboratory, Pune 411008 (India)
Publication Date:
OSTI Identifier:
22253104
Resource Type:
Journal Article
Resource Relation:
Journal Name: Journal of Chemical Physics; Journal Volume: 140; Journal Issue: 15; Other Information: (c) 2014 AIP Publishing LLC; Country of input: International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA)
Country of Publication:
United States
Language:
English
Subject:
37 INORGANIC, ORGANIC, PHYSICAL AND ANALYTICAL CHEMISTRY; ALUMINIUM; ATOMIC CLUSTERS; BORN-OPPENHEIMER APPROXIMATION; ELECTRONIC STRUCTURE; GALLIUM; GROUND STATES; ISOMERIZATION; ISOMERS; LIQUIDS; MELTING; MELTING POINTS; MOLECULAR DYNAMICS METHOD; SIMULATION; SOLIDS; SPECIFIC HEAT