Enhanced tensile properties of weight-reduced nanoporous carbon nanotube-aluminum composites

ME Suk, MATERIALS EXPRESS, 9, 801-807 (2019).

DOI: 10.1166/mex.2019.1561

In this study, the mechanical properties of light nanoporous Carbon nanotubes (CNT)-Aluminum (Al) composites were investigated using atomistic tensile simulations. High volume fractions of large size CNT were embedded in Al matrix composites to reduce the weight of Al by 23%. The lightweight CNT-Al composite exhibited enhanced mechanical properties, including 105.8, 246.9 and 243.7% improvement for tensile strength, fracture toughness, and elastic modulus, respectively. The decomposition of total stress into its CNT and Al matrix components indicated enhanced elastic properties were due to the shear interaction between CNT and Al in addition to the great load bearing capacity of CNT. By performing dislocation density analysis, it was discovered that the large dislocation storage capability of nanoporous CNT-Al enhanced ductility when compared to pure Al. This study demonstrates the high potential of nanoporous CNT-Al as a lightweight and strong, yet tough material, and it also provides atomic scale understanding of the mechanical behavior of CNT-Al nanocomposite.

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