Unified theory of thermal transport in crystals and disordered solids

Michele Simoncelli, Nicola Marzari & Francesco Mauri
Crystals and glasses exhibit fundamentally different heat conduction mechanisms: the periodicity of crystals allows for the excitation of propagating vibrational waves that carry heat, as first discussed by Peierls; in glasses, the lack of periodicity breaks Peierls' picture and heat is mainly carried by the coupling of vibrational modes, often described by a harmonic theory introduced by Allen and Feldman. Anharmonicity or disorder are thus the limiting factors for thermal conductivity in crystals or glasses;...
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