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New allotropes of carbon based in the C60 and C20 fullerenes with outstanding mechanical properties

Materials harder than diamond are always attract great attention from the scientists all over the world. Many attempts were made towards the synthesis especially of carbon material harder than diamond, which is the hardest possible material nowadays. A special interest belongs to materials called as fullerites. There are several experimental and theoretical works, where the synthesis and investigation of superhard fullerite were carried out. [1]–[4] Such materials reveal outstanding mechanical properties with the bulk modulus of several times higher than that of diamond.

In this case the computational approaches and methods allow the theoretical investigations and prediction of a new materials with desired properties without using very expensive experimental equipment. Here we used the state-of-the-art theoretical methods of computational predictions to predict new carbon phases based on the fullerene molecules of different sizes (C60 and C20). Using the evolutionary algorithm, implemented in USPEX package, [5] we considered more than 3000 possible crystal structures to find the most stable ones. The important point, that predicted phases are based on the polymerized fullerites, displaying the superior mechanical properties. We defined the crystal structure of predicted 4 stable allotropes by simulating the XRD patterns. All predicted structures are highly symmetric. The mechanical properties were studied in details in terms of elastic tensor, bulk and shear moduli and velocities of acoustic waves. All predicted structures display elastic constants and bulk modulus very close to diamond, which allows to say that we indeed predict new superhard phases. The possible way of synthesis of such phases was proposed consisting in the cold compression of a mixture of graphite and C60 fullerenes. The important feature of predicted phases (besides the mechanical properties) is that they have relatively small band gap ~2.5 eV, while the cI24 phase has the direct gap of 0.53 eV.

All obtained data allows the conclusion that predicted superhard semiconducting phases based on the polymerized fullerenes reveal necessary properties for applications in the electronic as basic elements.

 

[1] V.D. Blank, S.G. Buga, G.A. Dubitsky, N. R Serebryanaya, M.Y. Popov, and B. Sundqvist, Carbon 36, 319 (1998).

[2] M. Popov, V. Mordkovich, S. Perfilov, A. Kirichenko, B. Kulnitskiy, I. Perezhogin, and V. Blank, Carbon 76, 250 (2014).

[3] Y.A. Kvashnina, A.G. Kvashnin, M.Y. Popov, B.A. Kulnitskiy, I.A. Perezhogin, E.V. Tyukalova, L.A. Chernozatonskii, P.B. Sorokin, and V.D. Blank, J. Phys. Chem. Lett. 6, 2147 (2015).

[4] Y.A. Kvashnina, A.G. Kvashnin, L.A. Chernozatonskii, and P.B. Sorokin, Carbon 115, 546 (2017).

[5] C.W. Glass, A.R. Oganov, and N. Hansen, Comput. Phys. Commun. 175, 713 (2006).

 

 

 

 

Kvashnina Yu.A., Kvashnin D.G., Kvashnin A.G., Sorokin P.B.

 JETP Letters  105 ( 7) (2017)

 

Stochastic clustering of materials by plasma - surface interaction

Recently  stochastic clustering  with statistical self-similarity (fractality) has been found on material surface exposed under extreme plasma thermal loads in fusion devices (see [1]). In such devices, multiple processes of erosion and redeposition of the eroded material, surface melting and motion of the surface layers lead to a stochastic surface growth on the scales from tens of nanometers to hundreds of micrometers. The moving of eroded material species during redeposition from plasma and agglomeration on the surface is governed by stochastic electric fields generated by the high-temperature plasma. The specific property of the near-wall plasma in fusion device is the non-Gaussian statistics of electric field fluctuations with long-range correlations [2]. It leads to the stochastic agglomerate growth with a self-similar structure (hierarchical granularity - fractality) of non-Gaussian statistics contrary to a trivial roughness observed in ordinary processes of stochastic agglomeration. The dominant factor in such process in fusion device is the collective effect during stochastic clustering rather than the chemical element composition and physical characteristics of the solid material. In support of this view it is reported in this Letter, that such similar stochastic fractal structure with hierarchical granularity and self-similarity is formed on various materials, such as  tungsten, carbon materials and stainless steel exposed to high-temperature plasma in fusion devices.  In the literature it is discussed hypotheses of universal scalings of stochastic objects and processes with multi-scale invariance property (statistical self-similarity), see e.g. [3]. The kinetic models propose the describing of the stochastic clustering with a self-similar structure and considering the power law solutions for the number N of agglomerating clusters with mass m (see e.g. [4]), N(m)=Cm-(3+h)/2,  where h is a self-similarity exponent of the agglomeration kinetic model, C is a constant factor.  It is surprisingly found in this Letter that such the power laws (with power exponents from -2.4 to -2.8) describing the roughness of the test specimens from fusion devices are strictly deviated from that of the reference samples formed in a trivial agglomeration process forming   Brownian-like rough surface (such as samples exposed to low-temperature glow discharge plasma  and rough steel casting with the power law exponent in  the range of -1.97 to -2.2).  Statistics of  stochastic clustering samples from fusion devices is typically non-Gaussian and has a "heavy" tails of probability distribution functions (PDF) of stochastic surface heights (of the Hurst exponent from 0.68 to 0.86). It is contrary to the Gaussian PDF of the reference samples with trivial stochastic surface.  Stochastic clustering of materials from fusion devices is characterised by multifractal statistics. Quantitative characteristics of statistical inhomogeneity of such material structure, including multifractal spectrum with broadening of  0.5 ¾ 1.2, are in the range observed for typical multifractal objects and processes in nature. This may indicate a universal mechanism of stochastic clustering of materials under the influence of high-temperature plasma.

 

1. V.P. Budaev et al., JETP Letters vol. 95,   2, 78 (2012).

2. V.P. Budaev, S.P. Savin, L.M.  Zelenyi,   Physics-Uspekhi 54 (9),   875   (2011)

 3. A. L. Barabasi and H. E. Stanley, Fractal Concepts in Surface Growth (Cambridge Univ. Press, Cambridge, 1995).

4. C. Connaughton, R. Rajesh, O. Zaboronski, PRL 94 (19), 194503 (2005).

 

 

 

 

V.P. Budaev, JETP Letters    vol. 105, issue 5 (2017)

Fluctuational shift of nematic - isotropic phase transition temperature

Modern physics of liquid crystals is much younger than its traditional condensed matter material counterparts. Therefore the field is not yet completely elaborated and exhausted, and one may  still expect discoveries of new mesogen materials exhibiting of new types of liquid-crystalline ordering. A few years ago such a discovery of so-called bent-core or dimer mesogens which can form short pitch heli-conical nematic state (also known as twist-bend nematics, $N_{TB}$) [1, 2], attracted a lot of interest to this new state of matter with nano-scale orientational modulation. First, to understand the nature of the phase, basically different from conventional uniform nematics and from modulated in mass density smectics (see e.g., Landau theory approach, [3,4]). Second, to exploit potentially very perspective applications of the $N_{TB}$ liquid crystals. Along this way, very recently S.M.Saliti, M.G.Tamba, S.N. Sprunt, C.Welch, G.H.Mehl, A.Jakli, J.T.Gleeson [5] observed of the unprecedentedly large magnetic field induced shift $\Delta T_c(H)$ of the nematic - isotropic transition temperature. What is even more surprising $\Delta T_c(H)$ does not follow the thermodynamics text-book wisdom prediction $H^2$ scaling. Our  interpretation of such a behavior is based on singular longitudinal fluctuations of the nematic order parameter. Since these fluctuations are governed by the Goldstone director fluctuations they exist only in the nematic state. External magnetic field suppresses the singular longitudinal fluctuations of the order parameter. The reduction of the fluctuations changes the equilibrium value of the modulus of the order parameter in the nematic state, and leads  to additional (with respect to the mean field contribution) fluctuational shift of the nematic - isotropic transition temperature. The mechanism works for any nematic liquid crystals, however the magnitude of the fluctuational shift increases with decrease of the Frank elastic moduli. Since some of these moduli supposed to be anomalously small for the  bent-core or dimer mesogen formed nematic liquid crystals, just these liquid crystals  are promising candidates for the observation of the predicted fluctuational shift of the phase transition temperature.
 
[1] V.P.Panov, M.Nagaraj, J.K.Vij, et al., Phys. Rev. Lett., 105, 167801 (2010).
[2] M.Cestari, S.Diez-Berart, D.A.Dunmur, et al., Phys. Rev. E, 84, 031704 (2011).
[3]  E.I.Kats, V.V.Lebedev, JETP Letters,  100, 118-121 (2014).
[4] L.Longa, G.Pajak, Phys. Rev. E,  93, 040701 (2016).
[5] S.M.Saliti, M.G.Tamba, S.N. Sprunt, C.Welch, G.H.Mehl, A.Jakli, J.T.Gleeson, Phys. Rev. Lett., 116, 217801 (2016).


                                                                      E.I. Kats JETP  Letters 105 (4)  (2017)
 

Paradox of photons disconnected trajectories being located by means of "weak measurements" in the nested Max-Zehnder interferometer

In a recent letter A. Danan et al. [A. Danan, D. Farfurnik, S. Bar-Ad et al., Phys. Rev. Lett. 111, 240402 (2013)] have experimentally demonstrated an intriguing behavior of photons in an interferometer. Simplified layout of the experimental setup represents a nested Mach-Zehnder interferometer (MZI) and is shown below.

The surprising result is obtained when the inner MZI is tuned to destructive interference of the light propagating toward mirror F. In that case the power spectrum shows not only peak at the frequency of mirror C but two more peaks at the frequencies of mirrors A and B, and no peaks at the frequencies of mirrors E and F. From these results authors conclude that the path of the photons is not represented by connected trajectories, because the photons are registered inside the inner MZI and not registered outside it.

These unusual results have raised an active discussion. Nevertheless, until now there was no comprehensive and clear analysis of the experiment within the framework of the classical electromagnetic waves approach.

In this letter, we calculate  the signal power spectrum at the output of the nested MZI, based on traditional concept of the classical electromagnetic waves (or quantum mechanics).  This concept imply the continuity of the wave (photon) trajectories. We give intuitive clear and  comprehensive explanation of paradoxical results. So,  there is no necessity for a new concept of disconnected trajectories.

 

Simplified experimental setup with two nested Mach-Zehnder interferometers. A, B, C, E, and F stands for mirrors; BS1 and BS2, and PBS1 and PBS2 stands for ordinary and polarized beam splitters respectively. The elements BS1, A, B, and BS2 form an inner MZI whereas the elements PBS1, C, E, F and PBS2 form an outer MZI. Various mirrors inside the MZI vibrate with different frequencies. The rotation of a mirror causes a vertical shift of the light beam reflected off that mirror. The shift is measured by a quad-cell photodetector QCD.  When the vibration frequency of a certain mirror appears in the power spectrum, authors conclude that photons have been near that particular mirror

 

 

 

                                                                 G.N.Nikolaev JETP Letters 105 (3)  (2017)

Dark matter from dark energy in q-theory

   The dynamics of the quantum vacuum is one of the major unsolved problems of relativistic quantum field theory and cosmology. The reason is that relativistic quantum field theory and general relativity describe processes well below the Planck energy scale, while the deep ultraviolet quantum vacuum at or above the Planck energy scale remains unknown. Following the condensed matter experience we develop a special macroscopic approach called q-theory, which incorporates the ultraviolet degrees of freedom of the quantum vacuum into an effective theory and allows us to study the dynamics of the quantum vacuum and its influence on the evolution of the Universe.

     The vacuum in our approach is considered as the Lorentz-invariant analog of a condensed-matter system (liquid or solid) which is stable in free space. The variable q is the Lorentz-invariant analog of the particle number density, whose conservation regulates the thermodynamics and dynamics of many-body systems. This approach is universal in the sense that the same results are obtained using different formulations of the q-field. In the paper, we choose the q-field in terms of a 4-form field strength, which has, in particular, been used by Hawking for discussion of the main cosmological constant problem -- why is the observed value of the cosmological constant many orders of magnitude smaller than follows from naive estimates of the vacuum energy as the energy of zero-point motion. In q-theory, the huge zero-point energy is naturally cancelled by the microscopic (trans-Planckian) degrees of freedom, as follows from the Gibbs-Duhem identity, which is applicable to any equilibrium ground state including the one of the physical

vacuum.

            In the paper, we consider a further extension of q-theory. We demonstrate that, in an expanding Universe, the variable  effectively splits into two components. The smooth part of the relaxing vacuum field is responsible for dark energy, while the rapidly oscillating component behaves as cold dark matter. In this way, q-theory provides a combined solution to the missing-mass problem and the cosmological constant problem. If this scenario is correct, the implication would be that direct searches for dark-matter particles remain unsuccessful in the foreseeable future.

F.R. Klinkhamer and G.E. Volovik,

JETP Letters  105, issue 1 (2017)

NEW METHOD OF INVESTIGATIONS

The ability to detect nonequilibrium spin accumulation (imbalance) by all electrical means is one of the key ingredients in spintronics . Transport detection typically relies on a nonlocal measurement of a contact potential difference induced by the spin imbalance by means of ferromagnetic contacts  or spin resolving detectors . A drawback of these approaches lies in a difficulty to extract the absolute value of the spin imbalance without an independent calibration. An alternative concept of a spin-to-charge conversion via nonequilibrium shot noise was introduced and  investigated in  experiment recently . Here, the basic idea is that a nonequilibrium spin imbalance generates spontaneous current fluctuations, even in the absence of a net electric current. Being a primary approach , the shot noise based detection is potentially suitable for the absolute measurement of the spin imbalance. In addition, the noise measurement can be used for a local non-invasive sensing.

In this letter, we calculate the impact of a spin relaxation on the spin imbalance generated shot noise in the absence of inelastic processes. We find that the spin relaxation increases the noise up to a factor of two, depending on the ratio of the conductor length and the spin relaxation length. The design of the system. A diffusive normal wire of the length L is attached to normal islands on both ends. Nonequilibrium energy distribution on the left hand side of the wire generates the shot noise at a zero net current. The spin imbalance on the left-hand side of the wire is due to the electric current flowing from one ferromagnetic lead (red) to another one with opposite magnetization (blue).

 

 

V.S. Khrapai and K.E. Nagaev JETP  Letters 105, №1 (2017)