An efficient Monte Carlo algorithm for determining the minimum energy structures of metallic grain boundaries

AD Banadaki and MA Tschopp and S Patala, COMPUTATIONAL MATERIALS SCIENCE, 155, 466-475 (2018).

DOI: 10.1016/j.commatsci.2018.09.017

Sampling minimum energy grain boundary (GB) structures in the five- dimensional crystallographic phase space can provide much-needed insight into how GB crystallography affects various interfacial properties. However, the complexity and number of parameters involved often limits the extent of this exploration to a small set of interfaces. In this article, we present a fast Monte Carlo scheme for generating zero- Kelvin, low energy GB structures in the five-dimensional crystallographic phase space. The Monte Carlo trial moves include removal and insertion of atoms in the GB region, which create a diverse set of GB configurations and result in a rapid convergence to the low energy structure. We have validated the robustness of this approach by simulating over 1184 fill, twist, and mixed character GBs in both fcc (Aluminum and Nickel) and bcc (alpha-Iron) metallic systems.

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