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Buckling Instabilities in Coupled Nanoscale Structures

[+] Author Affiliations
J. Patrick Wilber, Curtis B. Clemons, Amy E. Pudloski, Gerald W. Young, Alper Buldum, D. Dane Quinn

University of Akron

Paper No. IMECE2005-81922, pp. 549-557; 9 pages
  • ASME 2005 International Mechanical Engineering Congress and Exposition
  • Design Engineering, Parts A and B
  • Orlando, Florida, USA, November 5 – 11, 2005
  • Conference Sponsors: Design Engineering Division
  • ISBN: 0-7918-4215-0 | eISBN: 0-7918-3769-6
  • Copyright © 2005 by ASME


We consider the bending of two nanotubes coupled together with van der Waal forces acting transverse to the axis, and subject to axial loads. The nanotubes are modeled as elastica while the interaction forces are derived from a Lennard-Jones 12-6 potential. The elastica are assumed to be a fixed distance apart at their ends, not necessarily equal to the equilibrium distance as identified from the Lennard-Jones potential. Therefore, the equilibrium configuration is not necessarily straight. As the compressive axial force increases, the beams can undergo buckling instability and the critical load depends not only on the material properties of the structure, but the geometry of the system as well. The continuum model is subjected to a Galerkin reduction to develop a reduced set of equations that can be used to calculate the equilibrium configuration of the system as well as the stability of these configurations. We show that the buckling instability in this model is significantly affected by the presence of the interaction force as well as the separation of the nanotubes at their ends.

Copyright © 2005 by ASME



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