Wrinkles and folds in compressed thin films of type-purified single-wall carbon nanotubes (SWCNTs) on polydimethylsiloxane (PDMS) substrates are used to study the mechanical response of pristine nanotube networks. While the low-strain plateau moduli are consistent with the exceptional mechanical properties of the individual nanotubes, the films are remarkably fragile, with small yield strains that decrease with increasing thickness. A comparison with conductivity measurements performed on identical type-purified SWCNT films suggests more than a two-fold difference in the onset of rigidity vs. connectivity percolation, and we discuss the implications of this for rigid-rod percolation and the use of type-purified SWCNTs in flexible electronics.
Citation: Soft Matter
Pub Type: Journals
carbon nanotubes, nanotubes, modulus, percolation, thin film, network