Metastability and crystallization in hard-sphere systems

M. D. Rintoul, S. Torquato

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

185 Scopus citations


We present results of large-scale molecular dynamics simulations of hard sphere systems at values of the volume fraction φ along the disordered, metastable branch of the phase diagram up to random close-packing φc. By quantifying the degree of local order, we determine the necessary conditions to obtain a truly random system, enabling us to compute the pressure carefully along the entire metastable branch. Near fc we show that the pressure scales as \(φc-φ\)-γ, where γ = 1 and φc = 0.644+/-0.005. Contrary to previous studies, we find no evidence of a thermodynamic glass transition and find that after long times the system crystallizes for all φ above the melting point.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)4198-4201
Number of pages4
JournalPhysical review letters
Issue number20
StatePublished - 1996

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • General Physics and Astronomy


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