Transformative technologies for desalination and chemical separations call for understanding water transport through man-made and biological nanochannels. Using numerical simulation of single-file flow of water through infinite carbon nanotubes, we find that flow is due to fast-moving density defects (solitons) that are additive so flow rate is proportional to number of solitons. Simulation results match predictions from the Frenkel-Kontorova model for soliton propagation. From 1-300 K flow rates increase as temperature decreases. Our results build a fundamentally new understanding of nanochannel flows and suggest new principles for the design of nanoscale devices. For finite-length carbon nanotube channels, we find the flow is limited by friction at the channel ends.
|Advisor:||Lichter, Seth H.|
|Commitee:||Garg, Anupam, Marko, John F., Patankar, Neelesh A.|
|Department:||Physics and Astronomy|
|School Location:||United States -- Illinois|
|Source:||DAI-B 75/01(E), Dissertation Abstracts International|
|Subjects:||Nanoscience, Physics, Nanotechnology|
|Keywords:||Carbon nanotubes, Frenkel-kontorova, Molecular dynamics, Nanofluidics, Simulation, Solitons|
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