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Researcher Advances Understanding of Carbon Nanotubes

With this data, engineers can more effectively leverage the material in applications.

Matt Maschmann, a researcher at the University of Missouri (MU), has developed a method to predict how carbon nanotubes (CNTs) are formed. By figuring out how these structures work, designers and engineers can can better incorporate the material into devices such as aerospace wiring, combat body armor, computer logic components and microsensors.

The experiments conducted at the university will also help engineers be able to create with the desired mechanical, thermal and electrical property types. To discover these behaviors, Maschmann uses modeling to map how the nanotubes grow in particular types of forests before testing properties.

“Scientists are still learning how carbon nanotube arrays form,” says Maschmann, assistant professor of mechanical and aerospace engineering in the College of Engineering at MU. “As they grow in relatively dense populations, mechanical forces combine them into vertically oriented assemblies known as forests or arrays. The complex structures they form help dictate the properties the CNT forests possess. We’re working to identify the mechanisms behind how those forests form, how to control their formation and thus dictate future uses for CNTs.”

For more information, visit the University of Missouri.

Sources: Press materials received from the company and additional information gleaned from the company’s website.

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