Rejuvenation in Deep Thermal Cycling of a Generic Model Glass: A Study of Per-Particle Energy Distribution

Bruns, M. and Varnik, F.

Volume: 15 Pages:
DOI: 10.3390/ma15030829
Published: 2022

We investigate the effect of low temperature (cryogenic) thermal cycling on a generic model glass and observe signature of rejuvenation in terms of per-particle potential energy distributions. Most importantly, these distributions become broader and its average values successively increase when applying consecutive thermal cycles. We show that linear dimension plays a key role for these effects to become visible, since we do only observe a weak effect for a cubic system of roughly one hundred particle diameter but observe strong changes for a rule-type geometry with the longest length being two thousand particle diameters. A consistent interpretation of this new finding is provided in terms of a competition between relaxation processes, which are inherent to glassy systems, and excitation due to thermal treatment. In line with our previous report (Bruns et al., PRR 3, 013234 (2021)), it is shown that, depending on the parameters of thermal cycling, rejuvenation can be either too weak to be detected or strong enough for a clear observation. © 2022 by the authors. Licensee MDPI, Basel, Switzerland.

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