Oxidation Dynamics of Aluminum Nanorods

Abstract

Understanding of combustion of metastable intermolecular composites, including the burning of aluminum nanoparticles, is critical for broad applications such as propulsion, explosives and other pyrotechnics. Aluminum nanorods (Al-NR) with oxidized shells are good candidates for stable fuel-oxidizer combinations. We investigate the oxidation dynamics of Al-NRs of different diameters (26, 36 and 46 nm) but the same aspect ratio using molecular dynamics simulations. We heat one end of the Al-NR to 1100 K and then study the oxidation reaction at the interface of the alumina shell and the Al core. We find: (1) heat produced by oxidation causes the melting of nanorods; (2) heat release is accelerated due to Al-O reaction at outside-shell and core-shell interfaces; and (3) the larger surface-to-volume ratio causes faster burning of thinner nanorods. We present results for the oxidation speed of nanorods.

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Correspondence to Ying Li.

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Li, Y., Nakano, A., Kalia, R.K. et al. Oxidation Dynamics of Aluminum Nanorods. MRS Online Proceedings Library 1521, 603 (2013). https://doi.org/10.1557/opl.2013.131

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