Near-ideal strength in metal nanotubes revealed by atomistic simulations

MF Sun and F Xiao and C Deng, APPLIED PHYSICS LETTERS, 103, 231911 (2013).

DOI: 10.1063/1.4841995

Here we report extraordinary mechanical properties revealed by atomistic simulations in metal nanotubes with hollow interior that have been long overlooked. Particularly, the yield strength in 1 1 1 Au nanotubes is found to be up to 60% higher than the corresponding solid Au nanowire, which approaches the theoretical ideal strength in Au. Furthermore, a remarkable transition from sharp to smooth yielding is observed in Au nanotubes with decreasing wall thickness. The ultrahigh tensile strength in 1 1 1 Au nanotube might originate from the repulsive image force exerted by the interior surface against dislocation nucleation from the outer surface. (C) 2013 AIP Publishing LLC.

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