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Configurational entropy of Wigner clusters

Radzvilavičius, A; Anisimovas, E; (2011) Configurational entropy of Wigner clusters. Journal of Physics Condensed Matter , 23 (7) , Article 075302. 10.1088/0953-8984/23/7/075302. Green open access

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Abstract

We present a theoretical study of classical Wigner clusters in two- and three-dimensional isotropic parabolic traps aiming at understanding and quantifying the configurational uncertainty due to the presence of multiple stable configurations. Strongly interacting systems of classical charged particles confined in traps are known to form regular structures. The number of distinct arrangements grows very rapidly with the number of particles; many of these arrangements have quite low occurrence probabilities and often the lowest-energy structure is not the most probable one. We perform numerical simulations on systems containing up to 100 particles interacting through Coulomb or Yukawa forces, and show that the total number of metastable configurations is not a well-defined and representative quantity. Instead, we propose to rely on the configurational entropy as a robust and objective measure of uncertainty. The configurational entropy can be understood as the logarithm of the effective number of states; it is insensitive to the presence of overlooked low-probability states and can be reliably determined even within the limited time of a simulation or an experiment. © 2011 IOP Publishing Ltd.

Type: Article
Title: Configurational entropy of Wigner clusters
Open access status: An open access version is available from UCL Discovery
DOI: 10.1088/0953-8984/23/7/075302
Publisher version: http://dx.doi.org/10.1088/0953-8984/23/7/075302
Language: English
Additional information: © 2011 IOP Publishing
UCL classification: UCL
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL BEAMS
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL BEAMS > Faculty of Engineering Science
URI: https://discovery.ucl.ac.uk/id/eprint/1364221
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