Calcite Kinks Grow via a Multistep Mechanism

A Broad and R Darkins and DM Duffy and IJ Ford, JOURNAL OF PHYSICAL CHEMISTRY C, 126, 15980-15985 (2022).

DOI: 10.1021/acs.jpcc.2c04116

The classical model of crystal growth assumes that kinks grow via a sequence of independent adsorption events where each solute transitions from the solution directly to the crystal lattice site. Here, we challenge this view by showing that some calcite kinks grow via a multistep mechanism where the solute adsorbs to an intermediate site and only transitions to the lattice site upon the adsorption of a second solute. We compute the free energy curves for Ca and CO3 ions adsorbing to a large selection of kink types, and we identify kinks terminated both by Ca ions and by CO3 ions that grow in this multistep way.

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