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Journal Article

Field-induced ordering phenomena and non-local elastic compliance in two-dimensional colloidal crystals


Keim,  P.
Max Planck Institute for Dynamics and Self-Organization, Max Planck Society;

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Franzrahe, K., Nielaba, P., Ricci, A., Binder, K., Sengupta, S., Keim, P., et al. (2008). Field-induced ordering phenomena and non-local elastic compliance in two-dimensional colloidal crystals. Journal of Physics: Condensed Matter, 20(40): 404218. doi:10.1088/0953-8984/20/40/404218.

Cite as: https://hdl.handle.net/21.11116/0000-0009-8591-C
Ordering phenomena in colloidal dispersions exposed to external one-dimensional, periodic
fields or under confinement are studied systematically by Monte Carlo computer simulations.
Such systems are useful models for the study of monolayers on a substrate. We find that the
interaction with a substrate potential completely changes the miscibility of a binary, hard disc
mixture at low external field amplitudes. The underlying ordering mechanisms leading to this
laser-induced de-mixing differ, depending on which components interact with the substrate
potential. Generic effects of confinement on crystalline order in two dimensions are studied
in a model system of point particles interacting via a potential ∝ r−12. The state of the system
(a strip of width D) depends very sensitively on the precise boundary conditions at the two
confining walls. Commensurate, corrugated boundary conditions enhance both orientational
order and positional order. In contrast, smooth repulsive boundaries enhance only the
orientational order and destroy positional (quasi-)long range order. As external fields have a
strong impact on the elastic behaviour of colloidal crystals there is a need to analyse the elastic
response in such systems for the field-free case first. To this aim we study the strain–strain
correlation functions in a two-dimensional crystal formed by super-paramagnetic colloids,
as monitored by standard video microscopy.