A comparative study by the grand canonical Monte Carlo and molecular dynamics simulations on the squeezing behavior of nanometers confined liquid films

YS Leng and Y Xiang and YJ Lei and Q Rao, JOURNAL OF CHEMICAL PHYSICS, 139, 074704 (2013).

DOI: 10.1063/1.4818536

Grand canonical Monte Carlo (GCMC) and liquid-vapor molecular dynamics (LVMD) simulations are performed to investigate the squeezing and phase transition of a simple liquid argon film confined between two solid surfaces. Simulation results show that the LVMD simulation is capable of capturing the major thermodynamic equilibrium states of the confined film, as predicted by the GCMC simulations. Moreover, the LVMD simulations reveal the non-equilibrium squeeze out dynamics of the confined film. The study shows that the solvation force hysteresis, observed in many surface force experiments, is attributed to two major effects. The first is related to the unstable jumps during the laying transitions of the confined film, in which the gradient of force profile is larger than the driving spring constant. The second effect is related to the squeeze out dynamics of the confined film even though the first effect is absent. In general, these two dynamic processes are non- equilibrium in nature and involve significant energy dissipations, resulting in the force hysteresis. (C) 2013 AIP Publishing LLC.

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