J. Phys. I France
Volume 6, Numéro 8, August 1996
Page(s) 1095 - 1125
J. Phys. I France 6 (1996) 1095-1125
DOI: 10.1051/jp1:1996118

Decay of Grooves Cut in a Surface with Singular Orientation when the Neighbouring Orientations are Unstable

Christophe Duport1, Anna Chame1, W.W. Mullins2 and Jacques Villain1

1  CEA, Département de Recherche Fondamentale sur la Matière Condensée, SPSMS, 38054 Grenoble Cedex 9, France
2  Carnegie-Mellon University, Department of Materials Science and Engineering, Pittsburgh, PA 15213, USA

Received 19 February 1996, accepted 10 April 1996

The decay of a grooved profile when the average orientation is singular is treated in the particular case when the orientations close to the singular one are unstable. The system is assumed to exchange atoms with its vapour. The step fluctuations, which allow the profile decay, are treated by a partially exact transfer matrix method. The time $\bar{\tau}$ to peel the topmost layer is obtained as a function of the width $\ell$ of a terrace: $\bar{\tau} \propto \ell {\rm exp}(k\ell)$, where the constant k depends on the temperature.

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