Journal article

Brownian motion-induced water slip inside carbon nanotubes

Chao Chen, Luming Shen, Ming Ma, Jefferson Zhe Liu, Quanshui Zheng

Microfluidics and Nanofluidics | SPRINGER HEIDELBERG | Published : 2014


Molecular dynamics simulations are performed to understand the characteristics of the one-dimensional Brownian motion of water columns inside carbon nanotubes (CNTs) at room temperature. It is found that the probability of 2-10-nm-long water columns sliding a distance larger than the energy barrier period inside 2-5-nmdiameter CNTs is greater than 50 %. Moreover, a conservative estimation gives that the thermal fluctuation-induced driving force exceeds the upper bound of the sliding energy barrier for a water column shorter than 117 nm. These findings imply that although water molecules form layered structures near the CNT inner walls, there is no critical interfacial shear stress to conquer..

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University of Melbourne Researchers


Awarded by National Science Foundation of China (NSFC)

Awarded by 973 Program

Funding Acknowledgements

L.S. acknowledges the financial support from the University of Sydney through the International Program Development Fund. Q.Z. appreciates the support by the National Science Foundation of China (NSFC) through Grant No. 10672089, No. 10772100 and No. 10832005, and the 973 Program No. 2007CB936803. The authors are grateful to the computing support from NCI National Facilities in Australia.