[106] Systematically extending classical nucleation theory

James F. Lutsko, "Systematically extending classical nucleation theory", New Journal of Physics, 20, 103015 (2018) http://jimlutsko.github.io/files/Lutsko_2018_5.pdf


The foundation for any discussion of first-order phse transitions is Classical Nucleation The- ory(CNT). CNT, developed in the first half of the twentieth century, is based on a number of heuristically plausible assumtptions and the majority of theoretical work on nucleation is devoted to refining or extending these ideas. Ideally, one would like to derive CNT from a more fundamen- tal description of nucleation so that its extension, development and refinement could be developed systematically. In this paper, such a development is described based on a previously established (Lutsko, JCP 136:034509, 2012 ) connection between Classical Nucleation Theory and fluctuating hydrodynamics. Here, this connection is described without the need for artificial assumtions such as spherical symmetry. The results are illustrated by application to CNT with moving clusters (a long-standing problem in the literature) and the constructrion of CNT for ellipsoidal clusters.