Articles

A Topographic View of Supercooled Liquids and Glass Formation

Science  31 Mar 1995:
Vol. 267, Issue 5206, pp. 1935-1939
DOI: 10.1126/science.267.5206.1935

Abstract

Various static and dynamic phenomena displayed by glass-forming liquids, particularly those near the so-called "fragile" limit, emerge as manifestations of the multidimensional complex topography of the collective potential energy function. These include non-Arrhenius viscosity and relaxation times, bifurcation between the α- and β-relaxation processes, and a breakdown of the Stokes-Einstein relation for self-diffusion. This multidimensional viewpoint also produces an extension of the venerable Lindemann melting criterion and provides a critical evaluation of the popular "ideal glass state" concept.

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