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Linear viscoelasticity from molecular dynamics simulation of entangled polymers

By A. E. Likhtman, S. K. Sukumaran and J. Ramirez

Abstract

The linear viscoelastic (LVE) spectrum is one of the primary fingerprints of polymer solutions and melts, carrying information about most relaxation processes in the system. Many single chain theories and models start with predicting the LVE spectrum to validate their assumptions. However, until now, no reliable linear stress relaxation data were available from simulations of multichain systems. In this work, we propose a new efficient way to calculate a wide variety of correlation functions and mean-square displacements during simulations without significant additional CPU cost. Using this method, we calculate stress−stress autocorrelation functions for a simple bead−spring model of polymer melt for a wide range of chain lengths, densities, temperatures, and chain stiffnesses. The obtained stress−stress autocorrelation functions were compared with the single chain slip−spring model in order to obtain entanglement related parameters, such as the plateau modulus or the molecular weight between entanglements. Then, the dependence of the plateau modulus on the packing length is discussed. We have also identified\ud three different contributions to the stress relaxation:  bond length relaxation, colloidal and polymeric. Their dependence on the density and the temperature is demonstrated for short unentangled systems without inertia. \u

Publisher: American Chemical Society
Year: 2007
OAI identifier: oai:centaur.reading.ac.uk:1024
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