An elastic model for bioinspired design of carbon nanotube bundles
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Collagen fibers provide a good example of making strong micro- or mesoscale fibers from nanoscale tropocollagen molecules through a staggered and cross-linked organization in a bottom-up manner. Mimicking the architectural features of collagen fibers has been shown to be a promising approach to develop carbon nanotube (CNT) fibers of high performance. In the present work, an elastic model is developed to describe the load transfer and failure propagation within the bioinspired CNT bundles, and to establish the relations of the mechanical properties of the bundles with a number of geometrical and physical parameters such as the CNT aspect ratio and longitudinal gap, interface cross-link density, and the functionalization-induced degradation in CNTs, etc. With the model, the stress distributions along the CNT–CNT interface as well as in every individual CNT are well captured, and the failure propagation along the interface and its effects on the mechanical properties of the CNT bundles are predicted. The work may provide useful guidelines for the design of novel CNT fibers in practice.
KeywordsCarbon nanotube fiber Collagen-mimic design Staggered pattern Interface modification
Zuoqi Zhang and Yongwei Zhang acknowledge the support from IHPC, A*STAR. The work is partially supported by the China Postdoctoral Science Foundation (Grant No. 2014M562055).
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