Thermally Induced Local Failures in Quasi-One-Dimensional Systems: Collapse in Carbon Nanotubes, Necking in Nanowires, and Opening of Bubbles in DNA

Cristiano Nisoli, Douglas Abraham, Turab Lookman, Avadh Saxena
2010 Physical Review Letters  
We present a general framework to explore thermally activated failures in quasi one dimensional systems. We apply it to the collapse of carbon nanotubes, the formation of bottlenecks in nanowires, both of which limit conductance, and the opening of local regions or "bubbles" of base pairs in strands of DNA that are relevant for transcription and danaturation. We predict an exponential behavior for the probability of the opening of bubbles in DNA, the average distance between flattened regions
more » ... a nanotube or necking in a nanowire as a monotonically decreasing function of temperature, and compute a temperature below which these events become extremely rare. These findings are difficult to obtain numerically, however, they could be accessible experimentally.
doi:10.1103/physrevlett.104.025503 pmid:20366608 fatcat:t4htpxe5n5grhbcjrqbxjdb7v4