Nondestructive elastic property measurements have been performed on Te nanowires with diameters in the range 20 150 nm. By using contact resonance atomic force microscopy, the elastic indentation modulus perpendicular to the prismatic facets of the nanowires has been accurately quantified. In this diameter range, a pronounced size dependence of the modulus has been observed: an invariant value consistent with Te bulk properties for large wire diameters, followed by a nonlinear increase with decreasing diameter, and finally an almost doubling of the modulus for Te nanowires thinner than 30 nm. A model based on surface stiffening describes the observations.
Applied Physics Letters
nanoscale mechanical properties, nanowires