Inserted: 4 may 2017
Last Updated: 13 jul 2018
Journal: Transactions of Mathematics and Its Applications
We investigate the minimization of configurational energies of Brenner type. These include two- and three-body interaction terms which favor the alignment of first neighbors. In particular, such configurational energies arise in connection with the molecular-mechanical modeling of covalent $sp$-bonding in carbon.
Ground states in three dimensions are characterized and the stability of chains and rings is discussed. The interaction energy is then augmented with terms corresponding to weaker interactions favoring the stratification of configurations. This gives rise to stratified structures which are reminiscent of nanoscrolls and multi-wall nanotubes. Optimal stratified configurations are identified and their geometry is discussed.