Nanotubes: Sliding on a Nanotube: Interplay of Friction, Deformations and Structure (Adv. Mater. 21/2012)



original image

The frictional properties of an individual carbon nanotube (CNT) are studied by H.-C. Chiu, E. Riedo, and co-workers on page 2879 by sliding an atomic force microscope tip across and along its principle axis. Direction-dependent frictional behavior is found to correlate strongly with the presence of structural defects, surface chemistry, and CNT chirality. This study shows that it is experimentally possible to tune the frictional/adhesion properties of a CNT by controlling the NT structure and surface chemistry, and also to use this friction to predict the NT's structural and chemical properties.