Europhys. Lett.
Volume 74, Number 5, June 2006
Page(s) 799 - 805
Section General
Published online 28 April 2006
Europhys. Lett., 74 (5), pp. 799-805 (2006)
DOI: 10.1209/epl/i2005-10581-4

Growth and morphology in Langmuir monolayers

A. Flores1, E. Corvera-Poiré2, C. Garza1 and R. Castillo1

1  Instituto de Física, UNAM - P. O. Box 20-364, D. F., 01000 Mexico
2  Facultad de Química, UNAM - Cd. Universitaria, D. F., 04510 Mexico

received 9 December 2005; accepted 30 March 2006
published online 28 April 2006

We show that domain growth of condensed phases from a metastable phase in Langmuir monolayers presents several stages. At the very beginning, depending on the supersaturation level, structures evolve through a tip-splitting dynamics. If supersaturation levels are high, there is a morphological transition, domains grow with needle tips that show as growth proceeds, side branching. The way in which the instability starts at round domains when a small lateral pressure jump is applied to the monolayer is also shown. A model for a monolayer interacting with the subphase is presented. This model can be related to the theory of dynamic phase transitions, where morphological structures and morphological transitions are predicted.

05.70.Np - Interface and surface thermodynamics.
47.20.Dr - Surface-tension-driven instability.
68.55.Ac - Nucleation and growth: microscopic aspects.

© EDP Sciences 2006