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Lennard-Jones Potential V(r) (Condensed Matter)

  1. Aug 6, 2009 #1
    http://www.ph.qmul.ac.uk/phy108/CM2005_week2_Lecture3_Interatomic%20Forces2.pdf [Broken]
    Page 6, I've understood all of the notes so far. But it just randomly goes into this, what/where did these p's and q's come from? What do they mean?

    Can't find anything that I can understand online!
     
    Last edited by a moderator: May 4, 2017
  2. jcsd
  3. Aug 6, 2009 #2

    Redbelly98

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    It is found (experimentally, I think) that the potential between atoms or ions has the behavior given by the 1st equation on page 6, where p and q are integer exponents in that expression. That's pretty much it, they are just the exponents that describe the potential. For two neutral, inert gas atoms, p=12 & q=6 describes the potential. For an ion + neutral atom, p and q will be something else. For two oppositely charged ions, we know that q=1 because of the inverse-square-law for charged particles.

    Hope that helps.
     
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