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An analytical study of the static state of multi-junctions in a multi-phase field model

W. Guo, R. Spatschek, I. Steinbach.

Physica D, 240, 382-388, (2011)


We investigate the properties of the multi-order parameter phase field model of Steinbach and Pezzolla [I. Steinbach, F. Pezzolla, A generalized field method for multi-phase transformations using interface fields, Physica D 134 (1999) 385–393] with respect to the behavior in triple and higher order junctions. From the structure of this model, it was speculated that “dynamical” solutions may exist in the triple junction, which could lead to a violation of Young’s law. Here we confirm analytically recent numerical simulations showing that such dynamical states do not exist, and that an equilibrium solution therefore does indeed correspond to a minimum of the free energy; this implies that Young’s law must be satisfied in the framework of the model. We show that Young’s law is a consequence of the interface kinetic equilibrium and not due to a mechanical force balance, in agreement with earlier predictions [C. Caroli, C. Misbah, On static and dynamical Young’s condition at a trijunction, J. Phys. I France 7 (1997) 1259–1265].

Keyword(s): multi-phase field; young’s law; static equilibrium; free energy; heterogeneous nucleation
DOI: 10.1016/j.physd.2010.09.014
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