Condensed Matter Physics, 2010, vol. 13, No. 2, p. 23602:1-15

Title: Statistical field theory for liquid vapor interface
  V. Russier (ICMPE, UMR 7182 CNRS and Université Paris Est 2-8 rue Henri Dunant, 94320 Thiais, France) ,
  J.-M. Caillol (Laboratoire de Physique Théorique, UMR 8627 CNRS and Université de Paris Sud, bat. 210, 91405 Orsay Cedex, France)

A statistical field theory for an inhomogeneous liquid, a planar liquid/vapor interface, is devised from first principles. The grand canonical partition function is represented via a Hubbard-Stratonovitch transformation leading, close to the critical point, to the usual φ4 scalar field theory which is then rigorously considered at the one-loop level. When further simplified it yields the well-known capillary wave theory without any ad hoc phenomenological parameter. Internal coherence of the one-loop approximation is discussed and good overall qualitative agreement with recent numerical simulations is stressed.

Key words: field theory, gas-liquid interface, surface tension
PACS: 61.30.Hn, 64.70.F, 68.03.Cd

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