The European Physical Journal Special Topics

, Volume 146, Issue 1, pp 443–457 | Cite as

On the mechanics of deformation instabilities in carbon nanotubes

  • D. Walgraef


This paper reviews some of the main mechanical properties of carbon nanotubes (CNT), including nonlinear elastic instabilities and buckling, as well as defect generation, dynamics and plasticity. A multiscale modeling approach of CNT dynamics is proposed. It considers CNT as cylindrical shells and describes their dynamics through the corresponding elasticity equations. This description may also incorporate defects such as vacancies, adatoms, dislocations, Stone–Wales defects and the coupling between film elasticity and defect dynamics. Elastic constants, defect formation and interaction energies may be obtained from direct comparison with experimental results or numerical simulations at the atomic level. It is then shown how the apparition and properties of deformation instabilities may be discussed in this framework.


Carbon Nanotubes Cylindrical Shell Graphene Sheet European Physical Journal Special Topic Circular Cylindrical Shell 
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Copyright information

© EDP Sciences/Società Italiana di Fisica/Springer-Verlag 2007

Authors and Affiliations

  • D. Walgraef
    • 1
  1. 1.Center for Nonlinear Phenomena and Complex Systems, Université Libre de BruxellesBrusselsBelgium

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