Homogeneous SPC/E water nucleation in large molecular dynamics simulations

R Angelil and J Diemand and KK Tanaka and H Tanaka, JOURNAL OF CHEMICAL PHYSICS, 143, 064507 (2015).

DOI: 10.1063/1.4928055

We perform direct large molecular dynamics simulations of homogeneous SPC/E water nucleation, using up to similar to 4 . 10(6) molecules. Our large system sizes allow us to measure extremely low and accurate nucleation rates, down to similar to 10(19) cm(-3) s(-1), helping close the gap between experimentally measured rates similar to 10(17) cm(-3) s(-1). We are also able to precisely measure size distributions, sticking efficiencies, cluster temperatures, and cluster internal densities. We introduce a new functional form to implement the Yasuoka- Matsumoto nucleation rate measurement technique (threshold method). Comparison to nucleation models shows that classical nucleation theory over-estimates nucleation rates by a few orders of magnitude. The semi- phenomenological nucleation model does better, under-predicting rates by at worst a factor of 24. Unlike what has been observed in Lennard-Jones simulations, post-critical clusters have temperatures consistent with the run average temperature. Also, we observe that post-critical clusters have densities very slightly higher, similar to 5%, than bulk liquid. We re-calibrate a Hale-type J vs. S scaling relation using both experimental and simulation data, finding remarkable consistency in over 30 orders of magnitude in the nucleation rate range and 180 K in the temperature range. (C) 2015 AIP Publishing LLC.

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