Kinetic Density Functional Theory: A Hydrodynamic Theory to Understanding Self Assembly of Interacting Particles into Ordered Crystalline Phases

Professor Arvind Baskaran
Department of Mathematics
UC Irvine


Understanding solid liquid phase transition is of great importance in many applications starting from growth of nano-crystals in solutions for solar cells to making the perfect ice cream/slushy. This forms the basis for understanding more complex phenomena such as solvation and self assembly in active matter systems.The element of interest in this talk is to understand the role and the effect of the fluid flow on the phase transition. The same effect that prevents the ice cream or slushy from freezing into a solid block.This talk will consider a system of particles that interact through a pair potential and choose a revised Enskog kinetic theory to describe the time evolution. Using a generalized Chapman-Enskog procedure non-local hydrodynamics that take the form of a density functional theory will be derived. A numerical study on the effect of melt flow on the freezing transition will be discussed in detail. Some potential applications to self assembly in active matter systems and solvation will also be outlined. This work was done in collaboration with John Lowengrub and Aparna Baskaran.