Uniform-acceptance force-bias Monte Carlo method with time scale to study solid-state diffusion
Faculty of Sciences. Chemistry
Physical review : B : condensed matter and materials physics. - Lancaster, Pa, 1998 - 2015
, p. 134301,1-134301,9
University of Antwerp
Monte Carlo (MC) methods have a long-standing history as partners of molecular dynamics (MD) to simulate the evolution of materials at the atomic scale. Among these techniques, the uniform-acceptance force-bias Monte Carlo (UFMC) method [ G. Dereli Mol. Simul. 8 351 (1992)] has recently attracted attention [ M. Timonova et al. Phys. Rev. B 81 144107 (2010)] thanks to its apparent capacity of being able to simulate physical processes in a reduced number of iterations compared to classical MD methods. The origin of this efficiency remains, however, unclear. In this work we derive a UFMC method starting from basic thermodynamic principles, which leads to an intuitive and unambiguous formalism. The approach includes a statistically relevant time step per Monte Carlo iteration, showing a significant speed-up compared to MD simulations. This time-stamped force-bias Monte Carlo (tfMC) formalism is tested on both simple one-dimensional and three-dimensional systems. Both test-cases give excellent results in agreement with analytical solutions and literature reports. The inclusion of a time scale, the simplicity of the method, and the enhancement of the time step compared to classical MD methods make this method very appealing for studying the dynamics of many-particle systems.