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Tuesday, March 18, 2008
2:30 PM - 3:30 PM
Oppenheimer Study Center (2nd Floor, Jemez Room)


VALENCY IN IONIC CRITICALITY: Field Theory fails, Simulation reports, Chemistry reveals

Michael E. Fisher
Institute for Physical Science and Technology, University of Maryland

2008 Kac Lecture Series Reception/Refreshments Served at 2:00pm In a primitive model electrolyte or hard-sphere plasma with charges *formula* how does, z, the valency of the ions, affect the critical temperature and density? What trends should be expected? It turns out that while a field theoretic perturbative calculation errs badly, careful simulations answer the question numerically. But how can one understand the answer? Basic, concrete physicochemical ideas going back to Debye and Hückel, and to Bjerrum when implemented — which proves not so easy — provide insights which seem to capture the essentials. And they also reveal the interfacial Galvani potential that builds up between two coexisting phases and vanishes as criticality is approached. For Additional Information Please Visit Our Website:

Host: Robert Ecke