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Title:A theoretical quantification of the possible improvement in the mechanical properties of carbon nanotube bundles by carbon ion irradiation
Authors:N.P. O’Brien, M.A. McCarthy, W.A. Curtin, 2013
Abstract: Improvement of single wall carbon nanotube (CNT) bundle mechanical properties through carbon ion irradiation is investigated using molecular dynamics. Increased inter-tube shear and toughness properties through formation of inter-tube cross-links is balanced against decreased tensile strength from induced defects. Bundles irradiated with carbon ions with energy 50–300 eV/ion, and fluence between 4 × 1013 cm−2 and 2 × 1014 cm−2, are mechanically tested. We find that with careful control of irradiation parameters, shear and toughness parameters increase by an order of magnitude, while tensile properties reduce by only 30–40%; in real CNT fibres with discontinuous CNT filaments the reduction would be much less. The nano-scale interface response resembles that of micro-scale composites, in which interstitial C atoms play a key role. This makes C ion deposition an attractive option over irradiation by electrons or other types of ions, since the extra C atoms can provide the required interstitial atoms. Within a certain cross-link density range, the interface shear modulus, shear stress at bonding onset, and frictional sliding stress after debonding are all linearly related to cross-link density making controlled design of fibre shear properties feasible. A possible post-treatment with very low energy irradiation is proposed for healing holes and partially restoring tensile strength.
ICHEC Project:Mechanical behaviour of interlinked carbon nanotubes for nanocomposites
Publication:Carbon, 53, March 2013, Pages 346-356
URL: http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.carbon.2012.11.021
Status: Accepted

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