Maximum Velocity for a Single Water Molecule Entering a Carbon Nanotube

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Carbon nanotubes, despite their hydrophobic nature, rapidly fill with water and allow super fast fluid flow through their interior due to the almost frictionless nanotube surface. The question arises as to whether it is possible to maximize the uptake (suction energy) of water and thus generate the highest possible fluid flow. In this paper, we outline the concepts of an acceptance condition and the suction energy and subsequently examine the suction characteristics of a single water molecule entering a carbon nanotube. In particular, we find that for the hydrogen atoms oriented towards the tube end, the radius of the carbon nanotube must be at least 3.464 Å (or 0.3464 nm) for acceptance of a water molecule, and that a radius of 3.95 Å provides the maximum uptake or suction energy.


Document Type: Research Article


Publication date: February 1, 2009

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  • Journal for Nanoscience and Nanotechnology (JNN) is an international and multidisciplinary peer-reviewed journal with a wide-ranging coverage, consolidating research activities in all areas of nanoscience and nanotechnology into a single and unique reference source. JNN is the first cross-disciplinary journal to publish original full research articles, rapid communications of important new scientific and technological findings, timely state-of-the-art reviews with author's photo and short biography, and current research news encompassing the fundamental and applied research in all disciplines of science, engineering and medicine.
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