Diffusive evolution of stable and metastable phases .2. Theory of nonequilibrium behavior in colloid-polymer mixtures

R M L Evans, Wilson Poon

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

By analytically solving some simple models of phase-ordering kinetics, we suggest a mechanism for the onset of nonequilibrium behavior in colloid-polymer mixtures. These mixtures can function as models of atomic systems; their physics therefore impinges on many areas of thermodynamics and phase ordering. An exact solution is found for the motion of a single, planar interface separating a growing phase of uniform high density from a supersaturated low-density phase, whose diffusive depletion drives the interfacial motion. In addition, an approximate solution is found for the one-dimensional evolution of two interfaces, separated by a slab of a metastable phase at intermediate density. The theory predicts a critical supersaturation of the low-density phase, above which the two interfaces become unbound and the metastable phase grows ad infinitum. The growth of the stable phase is suppressed in this regime.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)5748-5758
Number of pages11
JournalPhysical review. E, Statistical physics, plasmas, fluids, and related interdisciplinary topics
Volume56
Issue number5
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Nov 1997

Keywords

  • DYNAMICS
  • CRYSTALLIZATION
  • SUSPENSIONS

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