Local order variations in confined hard-sphere fluids
2013 (English)In: Journal of Chemical Physics, ISSN 0021-9606, E-ISSN 1089-7690, Vol. 139, no 16, 164701- p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Pair distributions of fluids confined between two surfaces at close distance are of fundamental importance for a variety of physical, chemical, and biological phenomena, such as interactions between macromolecules in solution, surface forces, and diffusion in narrow pores. However, in contrast to bulk fluids, properties of inhomogeneous fluids are seldom studied at the pair-distribution level. Motivated by recent experimental advances in determining anisotropic structure factors of confined fluids, we analyze theoretically the underlying anisotropic pair distributions of the archetypical hard-sphere fluid confined between two parallel hard surfaces using first-principles statistical mechanics of inhomogeneous fluids. For this purpose, we introduce an experimentally accessible ensemble-averaged local density correlation function and study its behavior as a function of confining slit width. Upon increasing the distance between the confining surfaces, we observe an alternating sequence of strongly anisotropic versus more isotropic local order. The latter is due to packing frustration of the spherical particles. This observation highlights the importance of studying inhomogeneous fluids at the pair-distribution level.
Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2013. Vol. 139, no 16, 164701- p.
IdentifiersURN: urn:nbn:se:su:diva-97666DOI: 10.1063/1.4825176ISI: 000326637500064OAI: oai:DiVA.org:su-97666DiVA: diva2:680241