Molecular dynamics simulation of the thermal properties of y-junction carbon nanotubes

Aron Cummings, Arizona State University

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The thermal conductivity of a Y-junction carbon nanotube with a (14,0) trunk splitting into two (7,0) branches has been investigated using a molecular dynamics approach. It has been found that the thermal conductivity of the Y-junction nanotube is less than that of a corresponding straight (14,0) nanotube, due to lattice defects in the form of non-hexagonal carbon rings at the junction. These lattice defects result in a discontinuity in the temperature profile of the Y-junction nanotube. Vacancy defects that were introduced to a straight (14,0) resulted in a similar discontinuity in the temperature profile. The behavior of a heat pulse propagating through a Y-junction carbon nanotube has also been studied using a molecular dynamics approach. It has been observed that the Y-junction structure under investigation exhibits rectification with regards to heat pulse propagation. Results have indicated that a heat pulse can pass from the trunk to the branches, but not from a branch into the trunk.

Abstract Author(s): Aron Cummings