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# The FK model

Some applications
The ground state problem
The fixed-density chain: Aubry transition
The free-end chain: Devils staircase
Dynamics
Kinks
Hierarchy of kink lattices
Generalizations
The Frenkel-Kontorova model
Yakov Il'ich Frenkel & Tatyana Kontorova (1938)
Simplicity of the model:
one-dimensional
classical mechanics
harmonic nearest-neighboring (NN) springs
sinusoidal substrate potential
System of units: m = 1, a = 2,
s
= 2
Parameters: (i) g (elastic constant) and (ii) a
A
(lattice constant)
Limiting cases: g >> 1 or g ~ 1 or g << 1
Also important: a
A
= 2 or a
A
2
Boundary conditions are also important. Variants:
free end(s) or
fixed density (in computer simulation periodic b.c.)

Richness of the model
Mathematics
integrable equations (sine-Gordon equation topological and dynamical solitons)
stochastic theory (standard map: GS Aubry (C/IC) transition; metastable excitations
glass-like behavior)
Physics richness and complexity of the phenomena involved
nonlinear interaction laws
competing lengths incommensurability effects
possible disorder due to pinning effects and intricacy of the excitation spectrum
The Frenkel-Kontorova model: Introduction http://www.iop.kiev.ua/~obraun/fk-intro.htm#model
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Applications - everywhere where one may separate a subsystem, and treat the remainder as an external
substrate potential, damping, and thermal bath; in particular:
dislocations; domain walls in ferroelectrics, ferro- and antiferro-magnetics
crowdions in solids; super-ionic conductors
proton transport in biological molecules and ice-like crystals
amorphous solids
submonolayers adsorbed on crystal surfaces (including such questions as phase diagram of the
system, surface reconstruction, surface diffusion, crystal growth)
tribology
Some appl i cati ons
Mechanical model Dislocation

[fcc(110), bcc(112), hcp(1010)]
DNA
fk_dna2.gif

The ground state (GS) problem

I. The fixed density case (periodic boundary conditions)
Aubry transition: C (commensurate GS) IC (incommensurate GS)
Potential energy: E(g, ) = [V
sub
(x
l
) + V
int
(x
l+1
x
l
)] min g(x
l+1
+ x
l1
2x
l
) = sin x
l

2D nonlinear area-preserving twist map (the Taylor-Chirikov standard map):

x
l+1
= x
l
+ p
l+1
p
l+1
= p
l
+ g
1
sin x
l

or
Y
l+1
= TY
l
where
Y
l
(0,2p ) (0,2p ) tour
The Frenkel-Kontorova model: Introduction http://www.iop.kiev.ua/~obraun/fk-intro.htm#model
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enlarged view enlarged view enlarged view

orbits:
regular (points) or quasi-periodic (curves) g =
g
c
(w) 1 (for the golden mean w)
chaotic (stochastic) g = 0
( the most "survived" orbit corresponds to the golden mean w = (5-1)/2 )
The GS of the FK model always corresponds to a regular orbit in the map
The GS is described by the hull function: x
l
= h(la + ), where is an arbitrary phase
For an irrational concentration, the Aubry transition by breaking of analyticity takes place:
for g > g
c
(w) we have the sliding state [ h(x) is continuous], while
for g < g
c
(w) we have the pinned state [ h(x) is discontinuous]
Note: metastable states correspond to glass-like configurations

II. The free-end chain: Devils staircase
Frank van der Merwe (FvdM) transition

Dynamics
Motion equation: d
2
x
l
/dt
2
+ sin x
l
g (x
l+1
+ x
l1
2x
l
) = 0
In the continuum-limit approximation we come to the sin-Gordon (SG) equation u
tt
u
xx
+ sin u = 0
The SG equation is exactly integrable: any solution is a superposition of
The Frenkel-Kontorova model: Introduction http://www.iop.kiev.ua/~obraun/fk-intro.htm#model
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phonons
breathers (dynamical solitons) u(x, t) = 4 tan
1
{ [(1
2
)/] sin(t) / cosh [x(1
2
)] }
kinks (topological solitons) u(x, t) = 4 tan
1
exp[ (x vt)/(1v
2
) ]
Discreteness effects:
phonon spectrum:
ph
(k) = [1 + 2g (1 cos k)]
1/2
, where |k|
Peierls-Nabarro (PN) potential
metastable states
localized (intrinsic, shape) kink modes
Kinks
antikink = 1 (trivial GS) kink
is topologically stable minimally possible local
extention (vacancy) or expansion (extra atom)
of the commensurate GS structure
min-en. cnf

Discreteness effects PN potential = E E

= 3/5 (complex GS)
kink

GS

antikink

Hierarchy of kink lattices
The original atomic FK lattice (example for = 4/3)
may be considered as a lattice of kinks constructed on the reference structure
0
= 1. Indeed, let us
consider kinks as quasiparticles of mass m
(kink)
subjected to the periodic PN potential of the height
PN

and interacting with the potential v
int
(R) (R
0
=3a
s
). In such a way we come to
the renormalized FK model with the structure
(kink)
= 1/3
min-en
The Frenkel-Kontorova model: Introduction http://www.iop.kiev.ua/~obraun/fk-intro.htm#model
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is characterised by the elastic constant g = a
2
v
int
(R
0
)/2
2

PN
, and its excitations are
superkinks / superantikinks
The case of = 1, << 1:
GS = GS(=1) + residual (geometrical) kinks + thermally excited kink-antikink pairs
low temperature T (0 < k
B
T <
superkink
): residual kinks form a superlattice; excitations are superkinks
higher T (
superkink
< k
B
T <
trivial kink
): kink superlattice is melted; excitations correspond to the
trivial (=1) kinks

Generalizations
substrate: nonsinusoidal such as PR (Peyrard-Remoissenet) or DSG (double sin-Gordon) potentials
interaction: anharmonic, long-ranged, nonconvex
2D FK models (phase diagrams, DW motion)
2D scalar FK model
zig-zag model (transverse degree of freedom)
2D vector FK models (spring-and ball model; truly 2D model)
dc driven FK-type models (a nice applet for the dc driven FK model was written by F.-J. Elmer)
ac driven FK model
Next: Generalizations of the FK model
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Last updated on October 5, 2008 by Oleg Braun
(kink)
The Frenkel-Kontorova model: Introduction http://www.iop.kiev.ua/~obraun/fk-intro.htm#model
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