Measurements of near-ultimate strength for multiwalled carbon nanotubes and irradiation-induced crosslinking improvements

Bei Peng, Mark Locascio, Peter Zapol, Shuyou Li, Steven L. Mielke, George C Schatz, Horacio D. Espinosa

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

606 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

The excellent mechanical properties of carbon nanotubes are being exploited in a growing number of applications from ballistic armour to nanoelectronics. However, measurements of these properties have not achieved the values predicted by theory due to a combination of artifacts introduced during sample preparation and inadequate measurements. Here we report multiwalled carbon nanotubes with a mean fracture strength >100 GPa, which exceeds earlier observations by a factor of approximately three. These results are in excellent agreement with quantum-mechanical estimates for nanotubes containing only an occasional vacancy defect, and are ∼80% of the values expected for defect-free tubes. This performance is made possible by omitting chemical treatments from the sample preparation process, thus avoiding the formation of defects. High-resolution imaging was used to directly determine the number of fractured shells and the chirality of the outer shell. Electron irradiation at 200 keV for 10, 100 and 1,800 s led to improvements in the maximum sustainable loads by factors of 2.4, 7.9 and 11.6 compared with non-irradiated samples of similar diameter. This effect is attributed to crosslinking between the shells. Computer simulations also illustrate the effects of various irradiation-induced crosslinking defects on load sharing between the shells.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)626-631
Number of pages6
JournalNature Nanotechnology
Volume3
Issue number10
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Oct 2008

Fingerprint

Multiwalled carbon nanotubes (MWCN)
crosslinking
Crosslinking
carbon nanotubes
Shells (structures)
Irradiation
Defects
irradiation
defects
armor
preparation
Carbon Nanotubes
Nanoelectronics
Electron irradiation
Armor
Chirality
electron irradiation
Ballistics
fracture strength
chirality

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Bioengineering
  • Biomedical Engineering
  • Materials Science(all)
  • Electrical and Electronic Engineering
  • Condensed Matter Physics
  • Atomic and Molecular Physics, and Optics

Cite this

Measurements of near-ultimate strength for multiwalled carbon nanotubes and irradiation-induced crosslinking improvements. / Peng, Bei; Locascio, Mark; Zapol, Peter; Li, Shuyou; Mielke, Steven L.; Schatz, George C; Espinosa, Horacio D.

In: Nature Nanotechnology, Vol. 3, No. 10, 10.2008, p. 626-631.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Peng, Bei ; Locascio, Mark ; Zapol, Peter ; Li, Shuyou ; Mielke, Steven L. ; Schatz, George C ; Espinosa, Horacio D. / Measurements of near-ultimate strength for multiwalled carbon nanotubes and irradiation-induced crosslinking improvements. In: Nature Nanotechnology. 2008 ; Vol. 3, No. 10. pp. 626-631.
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