Theory and simulations of water flow through carbon nanotubes: prospects and pitfalls

Bonthuis, Douwe Jan and Rinne, Klaus F. and Falk, Kerstin and Kaplan, C. Nadir and Horinek, Dominik and Berker, A. Nihat and Bocquet, Lyderic and Netz, Roland R. (2011) Theory and simulations of water flow through carbon nanotubes: prospects and pitfalls. Journal of Physics: Condensed Matter (Sp. Iss. SI), 23 (18). ISSN 0953-8984

This is the latest version of this item.

[thumbnail of Nanotubes.pdf] PDF
Restricted to Registered users only

Download (1MB) | Request a copy


We study water flow through carbon nanotubes using continuum theory and molecular dynamics simulations. The large slip length in carbon nanotubes greatly enhances the pumping and electrokinetic energy conversion efficiency. In the absence of mobile charges, however, the electro-osmotic flow vanishes. Uncharged nanotubes filled with pure water can therefore not be used as electric field-driven pumps, contrary to some recently ventured ideas. This is in agreement with results from a generalized hydrodynamic theory that includes the angular momentum of rotating dipolar molecules. The electro-osmotic flow observed in simulations of such carbon nanotubes is caused by an imprudent implementation of the Lennard-Jones cutoff. We also discuss the influence of other simulation parameters on the spurious electro-osmotic flow.
Item Type: Article
Additional Information: Article Number: 184110
Subjects: Q Science > QC Physics
Divisions: President's Office
Faculty of Engineering and Natural Sciences > Basic Sciences > Physics
Faculty of Engineering and Natural Sciences
Depositing User: A. Nihat Berker
Date Deposited: 09 May 2011 12:30
Last Modified: 26 Apr 2022 08:46

Available Versions of this Item

Actions (login required)

View Item
View Item