It is commonly believed that melting occurs when mean square displacement (MSD) of a particle of crystalline solid exceeds a threshold value. This is known as the Lindemann criterion, first introduced in the year of 1910 by Lindemann. However, Chakravarty et al., demonstrated that this common wisdom is inadequatebecause the MSD at melting can be temperature dependent when pressure is also allowed to vary along the coexistence line of the phase diagram [Chakravarty C, Debenedetti P G and Stillinger F H 2007 J. Chem. Phys. 126 204508]. We show here by extensive molecular dynamics simulation of both two and three dimensional polydisperse Lennard-Jones solids that particles on the small and large limits of size distribution exhibit substantially different Lindemann ratio at melting. Despite all the dispersion in MSD, melting is found tobe first order in both the dimensions at 5–10% dispersity in size. Sharpness of the transition is incommensurate with the different rate of growth of MSD. The increased MSD values of smaller particles play a role in the segregation of them prior to melting.
Volume 135, 2023
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