Theory of thermal expansion in 2D crystalsTheory of thermal expansion in 2D crystals
Faculty of Sciences. Physics

Condensed Matter Theory

article

2015Berlin, 2015

Physics

Physica status solidi: B: basic research. - Berlin

252(2015):11, p. 2433-2437

0370-1972

000364690400014

E

English (eng)

University of Antwerp

The thermal expansion alpha(T) in layered crystals is of fundamental and technological interest. As suggested by I. M. Lifshitz in 1952, in thin solid films (crystalline membranes) a negative contribution to alpha(T) is due to anharmonic couplings between in-plane stretching modes and out-of-plane bending (flexural modes). Genuine in-plane anharmonicities give a positive contribution to alpha(T). The competition between these two effects can lead to a change of sign (crossover) from a negative value of alpha(T) in a temperature (T) range T <= T-alpha to a positive value of alpha(T) for T > T-alpha in layered crystals. Here, we present an analytical lattice dynamical theory of these phenomena for a two-dimensional (2D) hexagonal crystal. We start from a Hamiltonian that comprises anharmonic terms of third and fourth order in the lattice displacements. The in-plane and out-of-plane contributions to the thermal expansion are studied as functions of T for crystals of different sizes. Besides, renormalization of the flexural mode frequencies plays a crucial role in determining the crossover temperature T-alpha. Numerical examples are given for graphene where the anharmonic couplings are determined from experiments. The theory is applicable to other layer crystals wherever the anharmonic couplings are known. (C) 2015 WILEY-VCH Verlag GmbH & Co. KGaA, Weinheim

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