Mechanics of buckled carbon nanotubes on elastomeric substrates

J. Xiao, H. Jiang, D. Y. Khang, J. Wu, Y. Huang, J. A. Rogers

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65 Citations (Scopus)


The buckling of carbon nanotubes (CNTs) on elastomeric substrates is studied in this paper. Simple expressions of the buckle wavelength and amplitude and the critical strain for buckling are obtained analytically. For single-walled CNTs, the wavelength is proportional to the CNT radius to the 3/4 power, while it increases linearly with the number of walls for multiwalled CNTs. For two parallel CNTs on the surface of the elastomeric substrate, there exists a critical spacing below which the two CNTs interact and buckle together, adopting the same wavelength. This cobuckling wavelength is very close to the wavelength for the larger CNT to buckle independently, i.e., the larger tube dominates the coupled buckling.

Original languageEnglish
Article number033543
JournalJournal of Applied Physics
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - 2008

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
We thank K. Colravy for help with processing using facilities at the Frederick Seitz Materials Research Laboratory. This material is based upon work supported by the National Science Foundation under Grant Nos. NIRT-0403489 and DMI-0328162, the U. S. Department of Energy, Division of Materials Sciences under Award No. DEFG02-91ER45439, through the Frederick Seitz MRL and Center for Microanalysis of Materials at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. Y.H. acknowledges the financial support from National Natural Science Foundation of China (NSFC). H.J. acknowledges the support from NSF Grant No. CMMI-0700440.

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Physics and Astronomy(all)


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