Analysis of spatial correlations in a model two-dimensional liquid through eigenvalues and eigenvectors of atomic-level stress matrices

VA Levashov and MG Stepanov, PHYSICAL REVIEW E, 93, 012602 (2016).

DOI: 10.1103/PhysRevE.93.012602

Considerations of local atomic-level stresses associated with each atom represent a particular approach to address structures of disordered materials at the atomic level. We studied structural correlations in a two-dimensional model liquid using molecular dynamics simulations in the following way. We diagonalized the atomic-level stress tensor of every atom and investigated correlations between the eigenvalues and orientations of the eigenvectors of different atoms as a function of distance between them. It is demonstrated that the suggested approach can be used to characterize structural correlations in disordered materials. In particular, we found that changes in the stress correlation functions on decrease of temperature are the most pronounced for the pairs of atoms with separation distance that corresponds to the first minimum in the pair density function. We also show that the angular dependencies of the stress correlation functions previously reported by Wu et al. Phys. Rev. E 91, 032301 ( 2015) do not represent the anisotropic Eshelby's stress fields, as it is suggested, but originate in the rotational properties of the stress tensors.

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