 EAM: Embedded Atom Method 
Definition:  A method to
approximate the
total energy of a
random arrangement
of atoms in a metal 
Explanation:  The energy of an atomic
arrangement is
given by a sum of
electrostatic pair
terms and an
embedding function,
which describes the
local energy
density.
Equivalent to
density functional
theory (→DFT),
EAM describes
the system as a
function of electron
density, but under
the approximation
that the density of
the whole system is
a simple
superposition of the
local atomic
densities. The EAM
potential is widely
used in molecular
dynamics (→MD)
simulations of
metals.
For a EAM system
with a single
element, three
functions are used
to describe the
system: (i) the
embedding function,
(ii) an electronic
density function,
and (iii) pair
exchange
potential. These
functions are
usually fitted to
experimental or
ab
initio
data.
The total energy
form for the EAM
potential is given
as Eq. 1 below,
where
φ_{ij}(r_{ij})
is the pair
potential term
describing
electrostatic
corecore repulsion,
and the cohesive
term, F_{i}(n_{i}),
describes
the energy gain of
the ion core when it
is embedded in the
energy density,
n_{i},
which is the
superposition of the
local energy
densities ρ_{j}(r_{ij}).

Picture / Figure / Diagram: 



Gammasurface of a Al EAM potential.


SFBLink:  The embedded atom method is used in MD simulations in part project A6 to determine grain boundary mobility values. It is also used in part project A10 in MD simulations to determine dislocation interaction maps. 
References:  Daw and Baskes, Phys Rev Lett, 50, 1285, 1983 Daw and Baskes, Phys Rev B, 29, 6443, 1984 

