85 research outputs found

    A multiscale Molecular Dynamics approach to Contact Mechanics

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    The friction and adhesion between elastic bodies are strongly influenced by the roughness of the surfaces in contact. Here we develop a multiscale molecular dynamics approach to contact mechanics, which can be used also when the surfaces have roughness on many different length-scales, e.g., for self affine fractal surfaces. As an illustration we consider the contact between randomly rough surfaces, and show that the contact area varies linearly with the load for small load. We also analyze the contact morphology and the pressure distribution at different magnification, both with and without adhesion. The calculations are compared with analytical contact mechanics models based on continuum mechanics.Comment: Format Revtex4, two columns, 13 pages, 19 pictures. Submitted for publication in the European Physical Journal E. Third revision with minimal changes: Corrected a few mistypin

    Nanodroplets on rough hydrophilic and hydrophobic surfaces

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    We present results of Molecular Dynamics (MD) calculations on the behavior of liquid nanodroplets on rough hydrophobic and hydrophilic solid surfaces. On hydrophobic surfaces, the contact angle for nanodroplets depends strongly on the root mean square roughness amplitude, but it is nearly independent of the fractal dimension of the surface. Since increasing the fractal dimension increases the short-wavelength roughness, while the long-wavelength roughness is almost unchanged, we conclude that for hydrophobic interactions the short-wavelength (atomistic) roughness is not very important. We show that the nanodroplet is in a Cassie-like state. For rough hydrophobic surfaces, there is no contact angle hysteresis due to strong thermal fluctuations, which occur at the liquid-solid interface on the nanoscale. On hydrophilic surfaces, however, there is strong contact angle hysteresis due to higher energy barrier. These findings may be very important for the development of artificially biomimetic superhydrophobic surfaces.Comment: 15 pages, 25 figures. Minimal changes with respect to the previous one. A few small improvements, references updated, added the reference to the published paper. Previous work on the same subject: arXiv:cond-mat/060405

    Physics of Solid and Liquid Alkali Halide Surfaces Near the Melting Point

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    This paper presents a broad theoretical and simulation study of the high temperature behavior of crystalline alkali halide surfaces typified by NaCl(100), of the liquid NaCl surface near freezing, and of the very unusual partial wetting of the solid surface by the melt. Simulations are conducted using two-body rigid ion BMHFT potentials, with full treatment of long-range Coulomb forces. After a preliminary check of the description of bulk NaCl provided by these potentials, which seems generally good even at the melting point, we carry out a new investigation of solid and liquid surfaces. Solid NaCl(100) is found in this model to be very anharmonic and yet exceptionally stable when hot. It is predicted by a thermodynamic integration calculation of the surface free energy that NaCl(100) should be a well ordered, non-melting surface, metastable even well above the melting point. By contrast, the simulated liquid NaCl surface is found to exhibit large thermal fluctuations and no layering order. In spite of that, it is shown to possess a relatively large surface free energy. The latter is traced to a surface entropy deficit, reflecting some kind of surface short range order. Finally, the solid-liquid interface free energy is derived through Young's equation from direct simulation of partial wetting of NaCl(100) by a liquid droplet. It is concluded that three elements, namely the exceptional anharmonic stability of the solid (100) surface, the molecular short range order at the liquid surface, and the costly solid liquid interface, all conspire to cause the anomalously poor wetting of the (100) surface by its own melt in the BMHFT model of NaCl -- and most likely also in real alkali halide surfaces.Comment: modified version of JCP 123, 164701 15 pages, 25 figure

    Melting and nonmelting of solid surfaces and nanosystems

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    We present an extensive but concise review of our present understanding, largely based on theory and simulation work from our group, on the equilibrium behavior of solid surfaces and nanosystems close to the bulk melting point. In the first part we define phenomena, in particular surface melting and nonmelting, and review some related theoretical approaches, from heuristic theories to computer simulation. In the second part we describe the surface melting/nonmelting behavior of several different classes of solids, ranging from van der Waals crystals, to valence semiconductors, to ionic crystals and metals. In the third part, we address special cases such as strained solids, the defreezing of glass surfaces, and rotational surface melting. Next, we digress briefly to surface layering of a liquid metal, possibly leading to solid-like or hexatic two dimensional phases floating on the liquid. In the final part, the relationship of surface melting to the premelting of nanoclusters and nanowires is reviewed.Comment: 54 pages, 26 figure

    Sealing is at the Origin of Rubber Slipping on Wet Roads

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    Loss of braking power and rubber skidding on a wet road is still an open physics problem, since neither the hydrodynamical effects nor the loss of surface adhesion that are sometimes blamed really manage to explain the 20-30% observed loss of low speed tire-road friction. Here we advance a novel mechanism based on sealing of water-filled substrate pools by the rubber. The sealed-in water effectively smoothens the substrate, thus reducing the viscoelastic dissipation in bulk rubber induced by surface asperities, well established as a major friction contribution. Starting with the measured spectrum of asperities one can calculate the water-smoothened spectrum and from that the predicted friction reduction, which is of the right magnitude. The theory is directly supported by fresh tire-asphalt friction data.Comment: 5 pages, 4 figures. Published on Nature Materials (November 7th 2004

    Electronic friction and liquid-flow-induced voltage in nanotubes

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    A recent exciting experiment by Ghosh et al. reported that the flow of an ion-containing liquid such as water through bundles of single-walled carbon nanotubes induces a voltage in the nanotubes that grows logarithmically with the flow velocity v0. We propose an explanation for this observation. Assuming that the liquid molecules nearest the nanotube form a 2D solid-like monolayer pinned through the adsorbed ions to the nanotubes, the monolayer sliding will occur by elastic loading followed by local yield (stick-slip). The drifting adsorbed ions produce a voltage in the nanotube through electronic friction against free electrons inside the nanotube. Thermally excited jumps over force-biased barriers, well-known in stick-slip, can explain the logarithmic voltage growth with flow velocity. We estimate the short circuit current and the internal resistance of the nanotube voltage generator.Comment: 8 pages, 3 figures; published on PRB (http://link.aps.org/abstract/PRB/v69/e235410) and on the Virtual Journal of Nanoscale Science and Technology (http://www.vjnano.org, July 14, 2002, Vol. 10, Iss. 2

    Dynamical chiral symmetry breaking in sliding nanotubes

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    We discovered in simulations of sliding coaxial nanotubes an unanticipated example of dynamical symmetry breaking taking place at the nanoscale. While both nanotubes are perfectly left-right symmetric and nonchiral, a nonzero angular momentum of phonon origin appears spontaneously at a series of critical sliding velocities, in correspondence with large peaks of the sliding friction. The non-linear equations governing this phenomenon resemble the rotational instability of a forced string. However, several new elements, exquisitely "nano" appear here, with the crucial involvement of Umklapp and of sliding nanofriction.Comment: To appear in PR
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