Nonlinear behaviour of cantilevered carbon nanotube resonators based on a new nonlinear electrostatic load model

Hamed Farokhi, Michael P. Païdoussis*, Arun K. Misra

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

18 Citations (Scopus)


The present study examines the nonlinear behaviour of a cantilevered carbon nanotube (CNT) resonator and its mass detection sensitivity, employing a new nonlinear electrostatic load model. More specifically, a 3D finite element model is developed in order to obtain the electrostatic load distribution on cantilevered CNT resonators. A new nonlinear electrostatic load model is then proposed accounting for the end effects due to finite length. Additionally, a new nonlinear size-dependent continuum model is developed for the cantilevered CNT resonator, employing the modified couple stress theory (to account for size-effects) together with the Kelvin-Voigt model (to account for nonlinear damping); the size-dependent model takes into account all sources of nonlinearity, i.e. geometrical and inertial nonlinearities as well as nonlinearities associated with damping, small-scale, and electrostatic load. The nonlinear equation of motion of the cantilevered CNT resonator is obtained based on the new models developed for the CNT resonator and the electrostatic load. The Galerkin method is then applied to the nonlinear equation of motion, resulting in a set of nonlinear ordinary differential equations, consisting of geometrical, inertial, electrical, damping, and size-dependent nonlinear terms. This high-dimensional nonlinear discretized model is solved numerically utilizing the pseudo-arclength continuation technique. The nonlinear static and dynamic responses of the system are examined for various cases, investigating the effect of DC and AC voltages, length-scale parameter, nonlinear damping, and electrostatic load. Moreover, the mass detection sensitivity of the system is examined for possible application of the CNT resonator as a nanosensor.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)604-629
Number of pages26
JournalJournal of Sound and Vibration
Early online date1 Feb 2018
Publication statusPublished - 14 Apr 2018
Externally publishedYes


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