Understanding degeneracy of two-point correlation functions via Debye random media

Murray Skolnick, Salvatore Torquato

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10 Scopus citations


It is well known that the degeneracy of two-phase microstructures with the same volume fraction and two-point correlation function is generally infinite. To elucidate the degeneracy problem explicitly, we examine Debye random media, which are entirely defined by a purely exponentially decaying two-point correlation function . In this work, we consider three different classes of Debye random media. First, we generate the “most probable” class using the Yeong-Torquato construction algorithm [Yeong and Torquato, Phys. Rev. E57, 495 (1998)1063-651X10.1103/PhysRevE.57.495]. A second class of Debye random media is obtained by demonstrating that the corresponding two-point correlation functions are effectively realized in the first three space dimensions by certain models of overlapping, polydisperse spheres. A third class is obtained by using the Yeong-Torquato algorithm to construct Debye random media that are constrained to have an unusual prescribed pore-size probability density function. We structurally discriminate these three classes of Debye random media from one another by ascertaining their other statistical descriptors, including the pore-size, surface correlation, chord-length probability density, and lineal-path functions. We also compare and contrast the percolation thresholds as well as the diffusion and fluid transport properties of these degenerate Debye random media. We find that these three classes of Debye random media are generally distinguished by the aforementioned descriptors, and their microstructures are also visually distinct from one another. Our work further confirms the well-known fact that scattering information is insufficient to determine the effective physical properties of two-phase media. Additionally, our findings demonstrate the importance of the other two-point descriptors considered here in the design of materials with a spectrum of physical properties.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number045306
JournalPhysical Review E
Issue number4
StatePublished - Oct 2021

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Condensed Matter Physics
  • Statistical and Nonlinear Physics
  • Statistics and Probability


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