Phonon mean free path of graphite along the c-axis

ZY Wei and JK Yang and WY Chen and KD Bi and DY Li and YF Chen, APPLIED PHYSICS LETTERS, 104, 081903 (2014).

DOI: 10.1063/1.4866416

Phonon transport in the c-axis direction of graphite thin films has been studied using non-equilibrium molecular dynamics (MD) simulation. The simulation results show that the c-axis thermal conductivities for films of thickness ranging from 20 to 500 atomic layers are significantly lower than the bulk value. Based on the MD data, a method is developed to construct the c-axis thermal conductivity as an accumulation function of phonon mean free path (MFP), from which we show that phonons with MFPs from 2 to 2000 nm contribute similar to 80% of the graphite c-axis thermal conductivity at room temperature, and phonons with MFPs larger than 100 nm contribute over 40% to the c-axis thermal conductivity. These findings indicate that the commonly believed value of just a few nanometers from the simple kinetic theory drastically underestimates the c-axis phonon MFP of graphite. (C) 2014 AIP Publishing LLC.

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