Elastic Relaxations in Ultrathin Epitaxial Alloy Films
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Elastic interactions responsible for the stability of nanometer-scale patterns in ultrathin, bulk-immiscible-alloy films are analyzed within the context of a hybrid atomistic-continuum model. Two apparently different descriptions of alloy film behavior, a continuum elasticity theory describing a deformable substrate and a rigid substrate atomistic scheme, emerge naturally as limiting cases on long and short length scales, respectively. Quantitative first-principles calculations explain the origin of recently observed nanoscale patterns in Co-Ag/Ru(0001), and reveal a surprising failure of the continuum model.
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