Nanomeasurements in Transmission Electron Microscopy
Wang, Z. L. (Zhong Lin)
De Heer, W. A.
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Nanomaterials have attracted a great deal of research interest recently. The small size of nanostructures constrains the application of well-established testing and measurement techniques, thus new methods and approaches must be developed for quantitative measurement of the properties of individual nanostructures. This article reports our progress in using in situ transmission electron microscopy to measure the electrical, mechanical, and field-emission properties of individual carbon nanotubes whose microstructure is well-characterized. The bending modulus of a single carbon nanotube has been measured by an electric field induced resonance effect. A nanabalance techniques is demonstranted that can be applied to measure the mass of a tiny particle as light as 22fg (1 fg = 10⁻¹⁵g), the smallest balance in the world. Quantum conductance was observed in defect-free nanotubes, which led to the transport of a superhigh current density at room temperature without heat dissipation. Finally, the field-emission properties of a single carbon nanotube are observed, and the field-induced structural damage is reported.