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Wednesday, January 18, 2006

Boston College Physicists Stretch Carbon Nanotubes

For the first time, a team of scientists at Boston College have shown that carbon nanotubes can be stretched at high temperature to nearly four times their original length, a discovery that may have implications for future semiconductor design as well as in the development of new nanocomposites.

In their Jan. 19, 2006 article in Nature (abstract available here), a team led by Associate Professor Jianyu Huang showed that at high temperatures, nanotubes become extremely ductile. At normal temperatures, carbon nanotubes snap when stretched to about 1.15 times their original length; at a temperature of more than 2,000 degrees Celsius, the BC team successfully stretched one tube from 24 nanometres to 91 nanometres in length before it snapped.

Huang (website) credited Boston College PhD student Shuo Chen with crafting a microscopic probe that allowed researchers to grab one end of the nanotube and stretch it while an electric current flowed through it. Other members of the team included Boston College physics faculty Zhifeng Ren, Ziqiang Wang and Kris Kempa; Boston College postdoctoral fellow Sung-Ho Jo; and professors Gang Chen and Mildred Dresselhaus at MIT and Dr. Morris Wang at the Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory in California.

Link via Newswise
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Comments on "Boston College Physicists Stretch Carbon Nanotubes"


Anonymous Anonymous said ... (1/18/2006 09:53:00 PM) : 

I was pleased to see the headline about this on the BC homepage since it seems like the only thing they every feature there now is sports-related. But they did not mention about it being published in Nature .... wow, this is very, very good news. Kudos to BC Physics!


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