The nucleation and growth properties of domains of molecules of the same state in open boundary three-dimensional (3D) spin-crossover systems of various shapes are discussed within the framework of the mechanoelastic model. The molecules are situated on face-centered-cubic lattices and are linked by springs through which they interact. Monte Carlo simulations imply that clusters nucleate from corners in the case of systems having well-developed faces and from kinks in the case of spherical samples, in accordance with available experimental data. In addition, a method to characterize the cooperativity in these systems is proposed, which by scanning the fluctuations in the 3D samples can be related directly to powder x-ray-diffraction experiments.

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