Thermodynamic stability of quasicrystals: From fluid dynamics to soft condensed matter
Raymond and Beverly Sackler School of Physics & Astronomy, Tel Aviv University and Leverhulme Trust Fellow & Visiting Professor, Dept. of Physics, University of Liverpool
The observation of quasicrystals in soft condensed matter — first reported by the Sheffield group of Zeng and Ungar — has provided insight into the ongoing quest to understand the formation and thermodynamic stability of quasicrystals in general. I shall explain the stability of certain quasicrystals, using surprisingly simple classical field theories, by making an analogy to Faraday waves. This will provide a recipe for designing pair potentials that yield a variety of periodic and aperiodic crystals with prescribed symmetry, as confirmed by molecular dynamics simulations. I shall attempt to identify a trend that might be emerging in going from fluid dynamics to soft matter,
which may (or may not) eventually lead to an understanding of the stability of quasicrystals in complex metallic alloys.
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