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## One atom basis phonons in 2D

Posted by peeterjoot on January 19, 2014

Let’s tackle a problem like the 2D problem of the final exam, but first more generally. Instead of a square lattice consider the lattice with the geometry illustrated in fig. 1.1.

Fig 1.1: Oblique one atom basis

Here, $\mathbf{a}$ and $\mathbf{b}$ are the vector differences between the equilibrium positions separating the masses along the $K_1$ and $K_2$ interaction directions respectively. The equilibrium spacing for the cross coupling harmonic forces are

\begin{aligned}\begin{aligned}\mathbf{r} &= (\mathbf{b} + \mathbf{a})/2 \\ \mathbf{s} &= (\mathbf{b} - \mathbf{a})/2.\end{aligned}\end{aligned} \hspace{\stretch{1}}(1.1)

Based on previous calculations, we can write the equations of motion by inspection

\begin{aligned}\begin{aligned}m \dot{d}{\mathbf{u}}_\mathbf{n} = &-K_1 \text{Proj}_{\hat{\mathbf{a}}} \sum_\pm \left( { \mathbf{u}_\mathbf{n} - \mathbf{u}_{\mathbf{n} \pm(1, 0)}} \right)^2 \\ &-K_2 \text{Proj}_{\hat{\mathbf{b}}} \sum_\pm \left( { \mathbf{u}_\mathbf{n} - \mathbf{u}_{\mathbf{n} \pm(0, 1)}} \right)^2 \\ &-K_3 \text{Proj}_{\hat{\mathbf{r}}} \sum_\pm \left( { \mathbf{u}_\mathbf{n} - \mathbf{u}_{\mathbf{n} \pm(1, 1)}} \right)^2 \\ &-K_4 \text{Proj}_{\hat{\mathbf{s}}} \sum_\pm \left( { \mathbf{u}_\mathbf{n} - \mathbf{u}_{\mathbf{n} \pm(1, -1)}} \right)^2.\end{aligned}\end{aligned} \hspace{\stretch{1}}(1.2)

Inserting the trial solution

\begin{aligned}\mathbf{u}_\mathbf{n} = \frac{1}{{\sqrt{m}}} \boldsymbol{\epsilon}(\mathbf{q}) e^{i( \mathbf{r}_\mathbf{n} \cdot \mathbf{q} - \omega t) },\end{aligned} \hspace{\stretch{1}}(1.3)

and using the matrix form for the projection operators, we have

\begin{aligned}\begin{aligned}\omega^2 \boldsymbol{\epsilon} &=\frac{K_1}{m} \hat{\mathbf{a}} \hat{\mathbf{a}}^\text{T} \boldsymbol{\epsilon}\sum_\pm\left( { 1 - e^{\pm i \mathbf{a} \cdot \mathbf{q}} } \right) \\ & +\frac{K_2}{m} \hat{\mathbf{b}} \hat{\mathbf{b}}^\text{T} \boldsymbol{\epsilon}\sum_\pm\left( { 1 - e^{\pm i \mathbf{b} \cdot \mathbf{q}} } \right) \\ & +\frac{K_3}{m} \hat{\mathbf{b}} \hat{\mathbf{b}}^\text{T} \boldsymbol{\epsilon}\sum_\pm\left( { 1 - e^{\pm i (\mathbf{b} + \mathbf{a}) \cdot \mathbf{q}} } \right) \\ & +\frac{K_3}{m} \hat{\mathbf{b}} \hat{\mathbf{b}}^\text{T} \boldsymbol{\epsilon}\sum_\pm\left( { 1 - e^{\pm i (\mathbf{b} - \mathbf{a}) \cdot \mathbf{q}} } \right) \\ &=\frac{4 K_1}{m} \hat{\mathbf{a}} \hat{\mathbf{a}}^\text{T} \boldsymbol{\epsilon} \sin^2\left( { \mathbf{a} \cdot \mathbf{q}/2 } \right)+\frac{4 K_2}{m} \hat{\mathbf{b}} \hat{\mathbf{b}}^\text{T} \boldsymbol{\epsilon} \sin^2\left( { \mathbf{b} \cdot \mathbf{q}/2 } \right) \\ &+\frac{4 K_3}{m} \hat{\mathbf{r}} \hat{\mathbf{r}}^\text{T} \boldsymbol{\epsilon} \sin^2\left( { (\mathbf{b} + \mathbf{a}) \cdot \mathbf{q}/2 } \right)+\frac{4 K_4}{m} \hat{\mathbf{s}} \hat{\mathbf{s}}^\text{T} \boldsymbol{\epsilon} \sin^2\left( { (\mathbf{b} - \mathbf{a}) \cdot \mathbf{q}/2 } \right).\end{aligned}\end{aligned} \hspace{\stretch{1}}(1.4)

This fully specifies our eigenvalue problem. Writing

\begin{aligned}\begin{aligned}S_1 &= \sin^2\left( { \mathbf{a} \cdot \mathbf{q}/2 } \right) \\ S_2 &= \sin^2\left( { \mathbf{b} \cdot \mathbf{q}/2 } \right) \\ S_3 &= \sin^2\left( { (\mathbf{b} + \mathbf{a}) \cdot \mathbf{q}/2 } \right) \\ S_4 &= \sin^2\left( { (\mathbf{b} - \mathbf{a}) \cdot \mathbf{q}/2 } \right)\end{aligned}\end{aligned} \hspace{\stretch{1}}(1.0.5.5)

\begin{aligned}\boxed{A = \frac{4}{m}\left( { K_1 S_1 \hat{\mathbf{a}} \hat{\mathbf{a}}^\text{T} + K_2 S_2 \hat{\mathbf{b}} \hat{\mathbf{b}}^\text{T} + K_3 S_3 \hat{\mathbf{r}} \hat{\mathbf{r}}^\text{T} + K_4 S_4 \hat{\mathbf{s}} \hat{\mathbf{s}}^\text{T}} \right),}\end{aligned} \hspace{\stretch{1}}(1.0.5.5)

we wish to solve

\begin{aligned}A \boldsymbol{\epsilon} = \omega^2 \boldsymbol{\epsilon} = \lambda \boldsymbol{\epsilon}.\end{aligned} \hspace{\stretch{1}}(1.0.6)

Neglecting the specifics of the matrix at hand, consider a generic two by two matrix

\begin{aligned}A = \begin{bmatrix}a & b \\ c & d\end{bmatrix},\end{aligned} \hspace{\stretch{1}}(1.0.6)

for which the characteristic equation is

\begin{aligned}0 &= \begin{vmatrix}\lambda - a & - b \\ -c & \lambda -d \end{vmatrix} \\ &= (\lambda - a)(\lambda - d) - b c \\ &= \lambda^2 - (a + d) \lambda + a d - b c \\ &= \lambda^2 - (Tr A) \lambda + \left\lvert {A} \right\rvert \\ &= \left( {\lambda - \frac{Tr A}{2}} \right)^2- \left( {\frac{Tr A}{2}} \right)^2 + \left\lvert {A} \right\rvert.\end{aligned} \hspace{\stretch{1}}(1.0.6)

So our angular frequencies are given by

\begin{aligned}\omega^2 = \frac{1}{{2}} \left( { Tr A \pm \sqrt{ \left(Tr A\right)^2 - 4 \left\lvert {A} \right\rvert }} \right).\end{aligned} \hspace{\stretch{1}}(1.0.6)

The square root can be simplified slightly

\begin{aligned}\left( {Tr A} \right)^2 - 4 \left\lvert {A} \right\rvert \\ &= (a + d)^2 -4 (a d - b c) \\ &= a^2 + d^2 + 2 a d - 4 a d + 4 b c \\ &= (a - d)^2 + 4 b c,\end{aligned} \hspace{\stretch{1}}(1.0.6)

so that, finally, the dispersion relation is

\begin{aligned}\boxed{\omega^2 = \frac{1}{{2}} \left( { d + a \pm \sqrt{ (d - a)^2 + 4 b c } } \right),}\end{aligned} \hspace{\stretch{1}}(1.0.6)

Our eigenvectors will be given by

\begin{aligned}0 = (\lambda - a) \boldsymbol{\epsilon}_1 - b\boldsymbol{\epsilon}_2,\end{aligned} \hspace{\stretch{1}}(1.0.6)

or

\begin{aligned}\boldsymbol{\epsilon}_1 \propto \frac{b}{\lambda - a}\boldsymbol{\epsilon}_2.\end{aligned} \hspace{\stretch{1}}(1.0.6)

So, our eigenvectors, the vectoral components of our atomic displacements, are

\begin{aligned}\boldsymbol{\epsilon} \propto\begin{bmatrix}b \\ \omega^2 - a\end{bmatrix},\end{aligned} \hspace{\stretch{1}}(1.0.6)

or

\begin{aligned}\boxed{\boldsymbol{\epsilon} \propto\begin{bmatrix}2 b \\ d - a \pm \sqrt{ (d - a)^2 + 4 b c }\end{bmatrix}.}\end{aligned} \hspace{\stretch{1}}(1.0.6)

Square lattice

There is not too much to gain by expanding out the projection operators explicitly in general. However, let’s do this for the specific case of a square lattice (as on the exam problem). In that case, our projection operators are

\begin{aligned}\hat{\mathbf{a}} \hat{\mathbf{a}}^\text{T} = \begin{bmatrix}1 \\ 0\end{bmatrix}\begin{bmatrix}1 & 0\end{bmatrix}=\begin{bmatrix}1 & 0 \\ 0 & 0\end{bmatrix}\end{aligned} \hspace{\stretch{1}}(1.0.16a)

\begin{aligned}\hat{\mathbf{b}} \hat{\mathbf{b}}^\text{T} = \begin{bmatrix}0\\ 1 \end{bmatrix}\begin{bmatrix}0 &1 \end{bmatrix}=\begin{bmatrix}0 & 0 \\ 0 & 1\end{bmatrix}\end{aligned} \hspace{\stretch{1}}(1.0.16b)

\begin{aligned}\hat{\mathbf{r}} \hat{\mathbf{r}}^\text{T} = \frac{1}{{2}}\begin{bmatrix}1 \\ 1 \end{bmatrix}\begin{bmatrix}1 &1 \end{bmatrix}=\frac{1}{{2}}\begin{bmatrix}1 & 1 \\ 1 & 1\end{bmatrix}\end{aligned} \hspace{\stretch{1}}(1.0.16c)

\begin{aligned}\hat{\mathbf{s}} \hat{\mathbf{s}}^\text{T} = \frac{1}{{2}}\begin{bmatrix}-1 \\ 1 \end{bmatrix}\begin{bmatrix}-1 &1 \end{bmatrix}=\frac{1}{{2}}\begin{bmatrix}1 & -1 \\ -1 & 1\end{bmatrix}\end{aligned} \hspace{\stretch{1}}(1.0.16d)

\begin{aligned}\begin{aligned}S_1 &= \sin^2\left( { \mathbf{a} \cdot \mathbf{q} } \right) \\ S_2 &= \sin^2\left( { \mathbf{b} \cdot \mathbf{q} } \right) \\ S_3 &= \sin^2\left( { (\mathbf{b} + \mathbf{a}) \cdot \mathbf{q} } \right) \\ S_4 &= \sin^2\left( { (\mathbf{b} - \mathbf{a}) \cdot \mathbf{q} } \right),\end{aligned}\end{aligned} \hspace{\stretch{1}}(1.0.16d)

Our matrix is

\begin{aligned}A = \frac{2}{m}\begin{bmatrix}2 K_1 S_1 + K_3 S_3 + K_4 S_4 & K_3 S_3 - K_4 S_4 \\ K_3 S_3 - K_4 S_4 & 2 K_2 S_2 + K_3 S_3 + K_4 S_4\end{bmatrix},\end{aligned} \hspace{\stretch{1}}(1.0.16d)

where, specifically, the squared sines for this geometry are

\begin{aligned}S_1 = \sin^2 \left( { \mathbf{a} \cdot \mathbf{q}/2 } \right) = \sin^2 \left( { a q_x/2} \right)\end{aligned} \hspace{\stretch{1}}(1.0.19a)

\begin{aligned}S_2 = \sin^2 \left( { \mathbf{b} \cdot \mathbf{q}/2 } \right) = \sin^2 \left( { a q_y/2} \right)\end{aligned} \hspace{\stretch{1}}(1.0.19b)

\begin{aligned}S_3 = \sin^2 \left( { (\mathbf{b} + \mathbf{a}) \cdot \mathbf{q}/2 } \right) = \sin^2 \left( { a (q_x + q_y)/2} \right)\end{aligned} \hspace{\stretch{1}}(1.0.19c)

\begin{aligned}S_4 = \sin^2 \left( { (\mathbf{b} - \mathbf{a}) \cdot \mathbf{q}/2 } \right) = \sin^2 \left( { a (q_y - q_x)/2} \right).\end{aligned} \hspace{\stretch{1}}(1.0.19d)

Using eq. 1.0.6, the dispersion relation and eigenvectors are

\begin{aligned}\omega^2 = \frac{2}{m} \left( { \sum_i K_i S_i \pm \sqrt{ (K_2 S_2 - K_1 S_1)^2 + (K_3 S_3 - K_4 S_4)^2 } } \right)\end{aligned} \hspace{\stretch{1}}(1.0.20.20)

\begin{aligned}\boldsymbol{\epsilon} \propto\begin{bmatrix}K_3 S_3 - K_4 S_4 \\ K_2 S_2 - K_1 S_1 \pm \sqrt{ (K_2 S_2 - K_1 S_1)^2 + (K_3 S_3 - K_4 S_4)^2 } \end{bmatrix}.\end{aligned} \hspace{\stretch{1}}(1.0.20.20)

This calculation is confirmed in oneAtomBasisPhononSquareLatticeEigensystem.nb. Mathematica calculates an alternate form (equivalent to using a zero dot product for the second row), of

\begin{aligned}\boldsymbol{\epsilon} \propto\begin{bmatrix}K_1 S_1 - K_2 S_2 \pm \sqrt{ (K_2 S_2 - K_1 S_1)^2 + (K_3 S_3 - K_4 S_4)^2 } \\ K_3 S_3 - K_4 S_4 \end{bmatrix}.\end{aligned} \hspace{\stretch{1}}(1.0.20.20)

Either way, we see that $K_3 S_3 - K_4 S_4 = 0$ leads to only horizontal or vertical motion.

With the exam criteria

In the specific case that we had on the exam where $K_1 = K_2$ and $K_3 = K_4$, these are

\begin{aligned}\omega^2 = \frac{2}{m} \left( { K_1 (S_1 + S_2) + K_3(S_3 + S_4) \pm \sqrt{ K_1^2 (S_2 - S_1)^2 + K_3^2 (S_3 - S_4)^2 } } \right)\end{aligned} \hspace{\stretch{1}}(1.0.22.22)

\begin{aligned}\boldsymbol{\epsilon} \propto\begin{bmatrix}K_3 \left( { S_3 - S_4 } \right) \\ K_1 \left( { (S_1 - S_2) \pm \sqrt{ (S_2 - S_1)^2 + \left( \frac{K_3}{K_1} \right)^2 (S_3 - S_4)^2 } } \right)\end{bmatrix}.\end{aligned} \hspace{\stretch{1}}(1.0.22.22)

For horizontal and vertical motion we need $S_3 = S_4$, or for a $2 \pi \times \text{integer}$ difference in the absolute values of the sine arguments

\begin{aligned}\pm ( a (q_x + q_y) /2 ) = a (q_y - q_y) /2 + 2 \pi n.\end{aligned} \hspace{\stretch{1}}(1.0.22.22)

That is, one of

\begin{aligned}\begin{aligned}q_x &= \frac{2 \pi}{a} n \\ q_y &= \frac{2 \pi}{a} n\end{aligned}\end{aligned} \hspace{\stretch{1}}(1.0.22.22)

In the first BZ, that is one of $q_x = 0$ or $q_y = 0$.

System in rotated coordinates

On the exam, where we were asked to solve for motion along the cross directions explicitly, there was a strong hint to consider a rotated (by $\pi/4$) coordinate system.

The rotated the lattice basis vectors are $\mathbf{a} = a \mathbf{e}_1, \mathbf{b} = a \mathbf{e}_2$, and the projection matrices. Writing $\hat{\mathbf{r}} = \mathbf{f}_1$ and $\hat{\mathbf{s}} = \mathbf{f}_2$, where $\mathbf{f}_1 = (\mathbf{e}_1 + \mathbf{e}_2)/\sqrt{2}, \mathbf{f}_2 = (\mathbf{e}_2 - \mathbf{e}_1)/\sqrt{2}$, or $\mathbf{e}_1 = (\mathbf{f}_1 - \mathbf{f}_2)/\sqrt{2}, \mathbf{e}_2 = (\mathbf{f}_1 + \mathbf{f}_2)/\sqrt{2}$. In the $\{\mathbf{f}_1, \mathbf{f}_2\}$ basis the projection matrices are

\begin{aligned}\hat{\mathbf{a}} \hat{\mathbf{a}}^\text{T} = \frac{1}{{2}}\begin{bmatrix}1 \\ -1\end{bmatrix}\begin{bmatrix}1 & -1\end{bmatrix}= \frac{1}{{2}} \begin{bmatrix}1 & -1 \\ -1 & 1\end{bmatrix}\end{aligned} \hspace{\stretch{1}}(1.0.25a)

\begin{aligned}\hat{\mathbf{b}} \hat{\mathbf{b}}^\text{T} = \frac{1}{{2}}\begin{bmatrix}1 \\ 1\end{bmatrix}\begin{bmatrix}1 & 1\end{bmatrix}= \frac{1}{{2}} \begin{bmatrix}1 & 1 \\ 1 & 1\end{bmatrix}\end{aligned} \hspace{\stretch{1}}(1.0.25b)

\begin{aligned}\hat{\mathbf{r}} \hat{\mathbf{r}}^\text{T} = \begin{bmatrix}1 & 0 \\ 0 & 0\end{bmatrix}\end{aligned} \hspace{\stretch{1}}(1.0.25c)

\begin{aligned}\hat{\mathbf{s}} \hat{\mathbf{s}}^\text{T} = \begin{bmatrix}0 & 0 \\ 0 & 1\end{bmatrix}\end{aligned} \hspace{\stretch{1}}(1.0.25d)

The dot products that show up in the squared sines are

\begin{aligned}\mathbf{a} \cdot \mathbf{q}=a \frac{1}{{\sqrt{2}}} (\mathbf{f}_1 - \mathbf{f}_2) \cdot (\mathbf{f}_1 k_u + \mathbf{f}_2 k_v)=\frac{a}{\sqrt{2}} (k_u - k_v)\end{aligned} \hspace{\stretch{1}}(1.0.26a)

\begin{aligned}\mathbf{b} \cdot \mathbf{q}=a \frac{1}{{\sqrt{2}}} (\mathbf{f}_1 + \mathbf{f}_2) \cdot (\mathbf{f}_1 k_u + \mathbf{f}_2 k_v)=\frac{a}{\sqrt{2}} (k_u + k_v)\end{aligned} \hspace{\stretch{1}}(1.0.26b)

\begin{aligned}(\mathbf{a} + \mathbf{b}) \cdot \mathbf{q} = \sqrt{2} a k_u \end{aligned} \hspace{\stretch{1}}(1.0.26c)

\begin{aligned}(\mathbf{b} - \mathbf{a}) \cdot \mathbf{q} = \sqrt{2} a k_v \end{aligned} \hspace{\stretch{1}}(1.0.26d)

So that in this basis

\begin{aligned}\begin{aligned}S_1 &= \sin^2 \left( { \frac{a}{\sqrt{2}} (k_u - k_v) } \right) \\ S_2 &= \sin^2 \left( { \frac{a}{\sqrt{2}} (k_u + k_v) } \right) \\ S_3 &= \sin^2 \left( { \sqrt{2} a k_u } \right) \\ S_4 &= \sin^2 \left( { \sqrt{2} a k_v } \right)\end{aligned}\end{aligned} \hspace{\stretch{1}}(1.0.26d)

With the rotated projection operators eq. 1.0.5.5 takes the form

\begin{aligned}A = \frac{2}{m}\begin{bmatrix}K_1 S_1 + K_2 S_2 + 2 K_3 S_3 & K_2 S_2 - K_1 S_1 \\ K_2 S_2 - K_1 S_1 & K_1 S_1 + K_2 S_2 + 2 K_4 S_4\end{bmatrix}.\end{aligned} \hspace{\stretch{1}}(1.0.26d)

This clearly differs from eq. 1.0.16d, and results in a different expression for the eigenvectors, but the same as eq. 1.0.20.20 for the angular frequencies.

\begin{aligned}\boldsymbol{\epsilon} \propto\begin{bmatrix}K_2 S_2 - K_1 S_1 \\ K_4 S_4 - K_3 S_3 \mp \sqrt{ (K_2 S_2 - K_1 S_1)^2 + (K_3 S_3 - K_4 S_4)^2 }\end{bmatrix},\end{aligned} \hspace{\stretch{1}}(1.0.26d)

or, equivalently

\begin{aligned}\boldsymbol{\epsilon} \propto\begin{bmatrix}K_4 S_4 - K_3 S_3 \mp \sqrt{ (K_2 S_2 - K_1 S_1)^2 + (K_3 S_3 - K_4 S_4)^2 } \\ K_1 S_1 - K_2 S_2 \\ \end{bmatrix},\end{aligned} \hspace{\stretch{1}}(1.0.26d)

For the $K_1 = K_2$ and $K_3 = K_4$ case of the exam, this is

\begin{aligned}\boldsymbol{\epsilon} \propto\begin{bmatrix}K_1 (S_2 - S_1 ) \\ K_3 \left( { S_4 - S_3 \mp \sqrt{ \left( \frac{K_1}{K_3} \right)^2 (S_2 - S_1)^2 + (S_3 - S_4)^2 } } \right)\end{bmatrix}.\end{aligned} \hspace{\stretch{1}}(1.0.26d)

Similar to the horizontal coordinate system, we see that we have motion along the diagonals when

\begin{aligned}\pm \frac{a}{\sqrt{2}} (k_u - k_v) = \frac{a}{\sqrt{2}} (k_u + k_v) + 2 \pi n,\end{aligned} \hspace{\stretch{1}}(1.0.26d)

or one of

\begin{aligned}\begin{aligned}k_u &= \sqrt{2} \frac{\pi}{a} n \\ k_v &= \sqrt{2} \frac{\pi}{a} n\end{aligned}\end{aligned} \hspace{\stretch{1}}(1.0.26d)

Stability?

The exam asked why the cross coupling is required for stability. Clearly we have more complex interaction. The constant $\omega$ surfaces will also be more complex. However, I still don’t have a good intuition what exactly was sought after for that part of the question.

Numerical computations

A Manipulate allowing for choice of the spring constants and lattice orientation, as shown in fig. 1.2, is available in phy487/oneAtomBasisPhonon.nb. This interface also provides a numerical calculation of the distribution relation as shown in fig. 1.3, and provides an animation of the normal modes for any given selection of $\mathbf{q}$ and $\omega(\mathbf{q})$ (not shown).

Fig 1.2: 2D Single atom basis Manipulate interface

Fig 1.3: Sample distribution relation for 2D single atom basis.