Volume 127, Number 4, August 2019
|Number of page(s)||7|
|Section||Electromagnetism, Optics, Acoustics, Heat Transfer, Classical Mechanics, and Fluid Dynamics|
|Published online||20 September 2019|
Equilibrium configurations of hard spheres in a cylindrical harmonic potential
1 School of Physics, Trinity College Dublin, The University of Dublin - Dublin, Ireland
2 Department of Mathematics, Aberystwyth University, Penglais - Aberystwyth, Ceredigion, Wales, SY23 3BZ UK
Received: 25 June 2019
Accepted: 19 August 2019
A line of hard spheres confined by a transverse harmonic potential, with hard walls at its ends, exhibits a variety of buckled structures as it is compressed longitudinally. Here we show that these may be conveniently observed in a rotating liquid-filled tube (originally introduced by Lee et al. (Adv. Mater., 29 (2017) 1704274) to assemble ordered three-dimensional structures at higher compressions). The corresponding theoretical model is transparent and easily investigated numerically, as well as by analytic approximations. Hence we explore a wide range of predicted structures occurring via bifurcation, of which the stable ones are also observed in our experiments. Qualitatively similar structures have previously been found in trapped ion systems.
PACS: 45.70.-n – Granular systems / 47.57.-s – Complex fluids and colloidal systems / 61.50.Ah – Theory of crystal structure, crystal symmetry; calculations and modeling
© EPLA, 2019
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