A nanoclutch for nanobots

May 24, 2012

Chinese researchers have designed and tested simulations of a "nanoclutch," a speed regulation tool for nanomotors.

The nanoclutch consists of two carbon nanotubes (), one inside the other, separated by a film of water. forces control the friction between the water and the inner and outer walls of the CNTs. When the two tubes are electrically charged, the water confined between them can transmit the torque from the inner tube to the outer tube, and the device is said to be in the engaged state. When the CNTs are uncharged, the device is in the disengaged state.

In a paper accepted to the American Institute of Physics' , the authors write that their proposed device can perform stepless speed regulation by changing the magnitude of the charge assigned to the CNT atoms.

Though further work is needed, they say the model may be helpful in designing and manufacturing nanorobots.

Explore further: Solving molybdenum disulfide's 'thin' problem

More information: Carbon Nanotube-Based Charge-Controlled Speed-Regulating Nanoclutch, Zhong-Qiang Zhang et al. Journal of Applied Physics (2012)

add to favorites email to friend print save as pdf

Related Stories

Carbon nanotube composites for enzymes and cosmetics

Sep 06, 2011

Japanese researchers have developed a low cost and efficient method for producing electrically conducting composites based on electrostatic adsorption of CNTs onto resin and ceramic particles for applications ...

Shining light on the elusive carbon nanotube

Oct 20, 2011

Michael Blades shakes a small bottle of liquid and watches as tiny black specks swirl around. Each speck represents a cluster of millions of carbon nanotubes (CNTs).

Using CNTs as infrared sensors

Jan 04, 2010

(PhysOrg.com) -- Semiconductors provide the bases for many different avenues of device research. Indeed, many of the technological devices that are commonplace in our society are reliant on semiconductors. However, as we ...

How do green algae react to carbon nanotubes?

Nov 04, 2011

Nanoparticles such as carbon nanotubes (CNT), which are found in an ever-increasing number of products, are ending up more and more frequently in our surroundings. If and how they affect aquatic ecosystems ...

Recommended for you

Solving molybdenum disulfide's 'thin' problem

Mar 27, 2015

The promising new material molybdenum disulfide (MoS2) has an inherent issue that's steeped in irony. The material's greatest asset—its monolayer thickness—is also its biggest challenge.

Snowflakes become square with a little help from graphene

Mar 25, 2015

The breakthrough findings, reported in the journal Nature, allow better understanding of the counterintuitive behaviour of water at the molecular scale and are important for development of more efficient techno ...

Nanostructure complex materials modeling  

Mar 25, 2015

Materials with chemical, optical, and electronic properties driven by structures measuring billionths of a meter could lead to improved energy technologies—from more efficient solar cells to longer-lasting ...

User comments : 0

Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.