Manifestation of Onsager's off-diagonal fluxes in diffusion of coadsorbed particles
Journal article, 2021
According to Onsager's phenomenological theory, the diffusion fluxes of coadsorbed particles are expressed via the gradients of their chemical potentials and can contain the off-diagonal terms. In the conventional two-dimensional lattice-gas models with jumps of monomers to nearest-neighbour vacant sites, such terms are absent at the mean-field (MF) level or in the framework including the statistical correlations related to lateral interaction between particles but neglecting the dynamical correlations. The role of the off-diagonal terms in these models with dynamical correlations and in other unconventional models is still not clear. Herein, the situation in this area is clarified from two perspectives by using Monte Carlo simulations and analytically, respectively. First, the scale of the related effects is shown for conventional diffusion with emphasis on the concentration profiles under steady-state conditions and diffusion-limited associative desorption under transient conditions. In these cases, the role of the off-diagonal terms is well manifested at the level above the MF approximation provided the coverages are appreciable and the difference between the jump rates of different particles is appreciable as well. Second, the off-diagonal terms are demonstrated to be available and important already at the MF level in unconventional diffusion occurring via concerted exchange and pair jumps.