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Research Papers

Surface Energy-Controlled Self-Collapse of Carbon Nanotube Bundles With Large and Reversible Volumetric Deformation

[+] Author and Article Information
Yuan Cheng

Institute of High Performance Computing,
A*STAR,
Singapore 138632
e-mail: chengy@ihpc.a-star.edu.sg

Nicola Maria Pugno

Department of Civil, Environmental and Mechanical Engineering,
University of Trento,
Via Mesiano 77,
I-38123 Trento, Italy

Xinghua Shi

State Key Laboratory of Nonlinear Mechanics,
Institute of Mechanics,
Chinese Academy of Sciences,
Beijing 100190, China

Bin Chen

Department of Engineering Mechanics,
Zhejiang University,
Hangzhou 310027, China

Huajian Gao

School of Engineering,
Brown University,
610 Barus & Holley,
182 Hope Street,
Providence, RI 02912
e-mail: huajian_gao@brown.edu

1Corresponding author.

Manuscript received December 27, 2012; final manuscript received February 4, 2013; accepted manuscript posted April 10, 2013; published online May 31, 2013. Editor: Yonggang Huang.

J. Appl. Mech 80(4), 040902 (May 31, 2013) (5 pages) Paper No: JAM-12-1578; doi: 10.1115/1.4024174 History: Received December 27, 2012; Revised February 04, 2013; Accepted April 10, 2013

Molecular dynamics simulations are performed to investigate the effect of surface energy on equilibrium configurations and self-collapse of carbon nanotube bundles. It is shown that large and reversible volumetric deformation of such bundles can be achieved by tuning the surface energy of the system through an applied electric field. The dependence of the bundle volume on surface energy, bundle radius, and nanotube radius is discussed via a dimensional analysis and determined quantitatively using the simulation results. The study demonstrates potential of carbon nanotubes for applications in nanodevices where large, reversible, and controllable volumetric deformations are desired.

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Figures

Grahic Jump Location
Fig. 1

Initial configuration of a bundle of seven single-walled carbon nanotubes (bundle I)

Grahic Jump Location
Fig. 2

Snapshot configurations of carbon nanotube bundle I at 500 ps under increasing values of surface energy determined by the van der Waals potential well depth: (a) ɛcc'=ɛcc, (b) ɛcc'=4ɛcc, or (c) ɛcc'=6ɛcc

Grahic Jump Location
Fig. 3

Snapshot configurations of bundle I at 500 ps under decreasing values of surface energy determined by the van der Waals potential well depth: (a) ɛcc'=2ɛcc, (b) ɛcc'=0.4ɛcc, or (c) ɛcc'=0.2ɛcc

Grahic Jump Location
Fig. 4

Normalized bundle volume V˜ as a function of normalized surface energy change Δɛ˜

Grahic Jump Location
Fig. 5

Initial configuration of a bundle of 19 single-walled carbon nanotubes (bundle II)

Grahic Jump Location
Fig. 6

Fully collapsed configuration of carbon nanotube bundle II

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