Critical properties of a liquid film between two planar walls are investigated in the canonical ensemble, within which the total number of fluid particles, rather than their chemical potential, is kept constant. The effect of this constraint is analyzed within mean-field theory (MFT) based on a Ginzburg-Landau free-energy functional as well as via Monte Carlo simulations of the three-dimensional Ising model with fixed total magnetization. Within MFT and for finite adsorption strengths at the walls, the thermodynamic properties of the film in the canonical ensemble can be mapped exactly onto a grand canonical ensemble in which the corresponding chemical potential plays the role of the Lagrange multiplier associated with the constraint. However, due to a nonintegrable divergence of the mean-field order parameter profile near a wall, the limit of infinitely strong adsorption turns out to be not well-defined within MFT, because it would necessarily violate the constraint. The critical Casimir force (CCF) acting on the two planar walls of the film is generally found to behave differently in the canonical and grand canonical ensembles. For instance, the canonical CCF in the presence of equal preferential adsorption at the two walls is found to have the opposite sign and a slower decay behavior as a function of the film thickness compared to its grand canonical counterpart. We derive the stress tensor in the canonical ensemble and find that it has the same expression as in the grand canonical case, but with the chemical potential playing the role of the Lagrange multiplier associated with the constraint. The different behavior of the CCF in the two ensembles is rationalized within MFT by showing that, for a prescribed value of the thermodynamic control parameter of the film, i.e., density or chemical potential, the film pressures are identical in the two ensembles, while the corresponding bulk pressures are not. © 2016 American Physical Society.
|Titolo:||Critical adsorption and critical Casimir forces in the canonical ensemble|
|Autori:||Gross, M.; Vasilyev, O.; Gambassi, A.; Dietrich, S.|
|Rivista:||PHYSICAL REVIEW. E|
|Data di pubblicazione:||2016|
|Digital Object Identifier (DOI):||10.1103/PhysRevE.94.022103|
|Appare nelle tipologie:||1.1 Journal article|