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Open AccessArticle

Spontaneous Symmetry-Breaking in the Corrosion Transformation of Ancient Bronzes

1
School of Physics and Technology, and MOE Key Laboratory of Artificial Micro- and Nano-Structures, Wuhan University, Wuhan 430072, China
2
School of History, Wuhan University, Wuhan 430072, China
3
Hubei Provincial Museum, Wuhan 430077, China
4
Center for Theoretical Physics, Wuhan University, Wuhan 430072, China
5
Center for Electron Microscopy, Wuhan University, Wuhan 430072, China
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
These authors contributed equally to this work.
Minerals 2020, 10(8), 656; https://doi.org/10.3390/min10080656
Received: 2 July 2020 / Revised: 19 July 2020 / Accepted: 21 July 2020 / Published: 24 July 2020
In general, during long-term museum conservation, ancient bronzes will generate new corrosion products also called the “secondary corrosion” on the surface of the unearthed “primary corrosion” products due to various environmental conditions. In this paper, the corrosion stages of several ancient Chinese bronzes are characterized by using optical microscope (OM), scanning electron microscope (SEM), energy dispersive spectrometer (EDS), X-ray diffraction (XRD) and Raman spectrometer (Raman). It is found that there exist phase transformation relationships in between the “primary corrosion” and the “secondary corrosion” stages (i.e., (1) the crystal lattice type tends to transform from a high symmetry system to a low symmetry system; (2) in case of the same crystal lattice type, the corrosions exhibit an inter-transformation or symbiosis). It is interesting to note that these transformation rules are very consistent with the well-known physical law of “spontaneous symmetry-breaking”, which won the 2008 Nobel Prize in Physics and also has been considered to be general law of nature, in addition to the principle of Gibbs free energy reduction. The significance of this discovery allows us to achieve the predictability and controllability of the bronze corrosion products (i.e., to predict the corrosive trends in advance and control the “second corrosion” by adjusting the conservation conditions. This research provides a novel conservation concept of ancient bronzes. View Full-Text
Keywords: ancient bronze; primary corrosion; secondary corrosion; phase transformation; crystallographic analysis; spontaneous symmetry-breaking ancient bronze; primary corrosion; secondary corrosion; phase transformation; crystallographic analysis; spontaneous symmetry-breaking
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MDPI and ACS Style

Yang, Y.; Cao, X.; Li, Y.; Wang, Z.; Li, B.; Jiang, X.; Jia, J.; Pan, C. Spontaneous Symmetry-Breaking in the Corrosion Transformation of Ancient Bronzes. Minerals 2020, 10, 656. https://doi.org/10.3390/min10080656

AMA Style

Yang Y, Cao X, Li Y, Wang Z, Li B, Jiang X, Jia J, Pan C. Spontaneous Symmetry-Breaking in the Corrosion Transformation of Ancient Bronzes. Minerals. 2020; 10(8):656. https://doi.org/10.3390/min10080656

Chicago/Turabian Style

Yang, Yanpeng; Cao, Xiaojuan; Li, Yang; Wang, Zhongchi; Li, Bingjie; Jiang, Xudong; Jia, Junji; Pan, Chunxu. 2020. "Spontaneous Symmetry-Breaking in the Corrosion Transformation of Ancient Bronzes" Minerals 10, no. 8: 656. https://doi.org/10.3390/min10080656

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