Coarse-grained potentials of single-walled carbon nanotubes

Junhua Zhao, Jin Wu Jiang, Lifeng Wang, Wanlin Guo, Timon Rabczuk

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

63 Citations (Scopus)


We develop the coarse-grained (CG) potentials of single-walled carbon nanotubes (SWCNTs) in CNT bundles and buckypaper for the study of the static and dynamic behaviors. The explicit expressions of the CG stretching, bending and torsion potentials for the nanotubes are obtained by the stick-spiral and the beam models, respectively. The non-bonded CG potentials between two different CG beads are derived from analytical results based on the cohesive energy between two parallel and crossing SWCNTs from the van der Waals interactions. We show that the CG model is applicable to large deformations of complex CNT systems by combining the bonded potentials with non-bonded potentials. Checking against full atom molecular dynamics calculations and our analytical results shows that the present CG potentials have high accuracy. The established CG potentials are used to study the mechanical properties of the CNT bundles and buckypaper efficiently at minor computational cost, which shows great potential for the design of micro- and nanomechanical devices and systems.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)197-218
Number of pages22
JournalJournal of the Mechanics and Physics of Solids
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 2014 Nov
Externally publishedYes


  • Carbon nanotube buckypaper
  • Carbon nanotubebundles
  • Carbon nanotubes
  • Coarse-grained potentials
  • Molecular mechanics

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Condensed Matter Physics
  • Mechanics of Materials
  • Mechanical Engineering


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