A method for designing tunable chiral mechanical carbon networks for energy storage

K Cai and X Li and Z Zhong and J Shi and QH Qin, PHYSICAL CHEMISTRY CHEMICAL PHYSICS, 23, 26209-26218 (2021).

DOI: 10.1039/d1cp03481b

A method is proposed for designing tunable chiral nano-networks using partly hydrogenated graphene ribbons and carbon nanotubes (CNTs). In the network, the hydrogenated graphene ribbons (HGRs) act as basic components, which connect each other via CNT joints. Each component contains two HGR segments and an internal graphene joint (G-J2) or CNT joint (CNT-J2). Since the two HGR segments are hydrogenated at opposite surfaces, they may wind in chiral about the internal joint to form a scroll (G-J2-scroll or CNT-J2-scroll) or about the two end joints to form CNT-J4-scrolls. In general, a G-J2-scroll is formed more easily than both a CNT-J4-scroll and a CNT-J2-scroll. Because of scrolling, the surface energy is reduced. This reduction is converted to and stored as deformation potential energy. By means of molecular-dynamics simulations, we studied the final configurations of two types of networks from the same components, the maximum shrinkage, and their capacity of energy storage for potential application of energy storage or as large-deformable components in a nano-device. The results indicate that the network reaches a stable state when the shrinkage reaches 70% of the two in-plane dimensions.

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