Capillary Instability in Nanowire Geometries

T Frolov and WC Carter and M Asta, NANO LETTERS, 14, 3577-3581 (2014).

DOI: 10.1021/nl501214p

In this study, we present atomistic simulations and theoretical analyses that reveal a capillary instability that is intrinsic to wetting geometries characteristic of the vapor-liquid-solid mechanism for nanowire growth. The analysis establishes a transition between axisymmetric and tilted wetting configurations that occurs when the triple line geometry satisfies Young's force-balance condition. The intrinsic nature of the instability is anticipated to be linked to the phenomenon of nanowire kinking in response to changes in environmental conditions, such that the current results may have broad implications for the design of experimental strategies for controlled growth of crystalline nanowires with complex geometries.

Return to Publications page