A new Markov process describing crystal growth in three dimensions is introduced. States of the process are configurations of the crystal surface, which has a terrace-edge-kink structure. The states are continuous along edges but discrete across edges, in accordance with the very different rates for the two types of captures of particles. Stationary distributions, describing steady crystal growth, are found in general. To our knowledge, these are the first examples of stationary distributions for layered crystal growth in three dimensions. The steady growth rate and other quantities are obtained explicitly for two interacting edges. For many interacting edges, growth behavior is determined (a) in various asymptotic regimes including thermodynamic limits, (b) via simulations, and (c) using series (cluster) expansions in the slope of the surface, the first three coefficients being computed. The theoretical growth rates show a marked dependence on surface dimensions. This may contribute to the size dependence and dispersion in the observed growth rate of small crystals.
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Gates, D.J., Westcott, M. Stationary states of crystal growth in three dimensions. J Stat Phys 81, 681–715 (1995). https://doi.org/10.1007/BF02179253
- Crystal growth
- Markov process
- stationary distribution
- growth rate
- thermodynamic limit
- cluster expansion
- coincidence probability