Phonon dispersion relations of crystalline solids based on LAMMPS package*
ZY Wei and TH Qi and WY Chen and YF Chen, CHINESE PHYSICS B, 30, 114301 (2021).
The phonon dispersion relations of crystalline solids play an important role in determining the mechanical and thermal properties of materials. The phonon dispersion relation, as well as the vibrational density of states, is also often used as an indicator of variation of lattice thermal conductivity with the external stress, defects, etc. In this study, a simple and fast tool is proposed to acquire the phonon dispersion relation of crystalline solids based on the LAMMPS package. The theoretical details for the calculation of the phonon dispersion relation are derived mathematically and the computational flow chart is present. The tool is first used to calculate the phonon dispersion relation of graphene with two atoms in the unit cell. Then, the phonon dispersions corresponding to several potentials or force fields, which are commonly used in the LAMMPS package to modeling the graphene, are obtained to compare with that from the DFT calculation. They are further extended to evaluate the accuracy of the used potentials before the molecular dynamics simulation. The tool is also used to calculate the phonon dispersion relation of superlattice structures that contains more than one hundred of atoms in the unit cell, which predicts the phonon band gaps along the cross-plane direction. Since the phonon dispersion relation plays an important role in the physical properties of condensed matter, the proposed tool for the calculation of the phonon dispersion relation is of great significance for predicting and explaining the mechanical and thermal properties of crystalline solids.
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