Nanomechanics: A Continuum Theory Based on the Interatomic Potential


Dr. Y. Huang
Department of Mechanical and IndustrialEngineering
University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign

Location: Engineering Gateway, E3161


Dr. Y. Huang will first summarize his research on (i) micromechanics of advanced materials; (ii) mechanics of stretchable electronics; and (iii) nanomechanics and multiscale simulation.

He will then focus on the nanomechanics theory his team has developed.

It is commonly believed that continuum mechanics theories may not be applicable on the anometer scale due to the discrete nature of atoms.  Here, they have developed a nano-continuum theory based on the interatomic potential for nanostructured materials.  The interatomic potential is directly incorporated into the continuum theory through the constitutive models.  The nano-continuum theory is then applied to study the mechanical deformation of carbon nanotubes, including (1) the pre-deformation energy; (2) linear elastic modulus; (3) fracture nucleation; (4) defect nucleation; (5) electrical property change due to mechanical deformation; (6) binding energy between carbon nanotubes; (7) coefficient of thermal expansion; and (8) specific heat.  The nano-continuum theory agrees very well with the atomistic models without any parameter fitting, and therefore has the potential to be applied to complex nanoscale material systems (e.g., nanocomposites) and devices (e.g., nanoelectronics).

About the Speaker:

Yonggang Young Huang received his Ph.D. from HarvardUniversity in 1990 under the supervision of Professor John W. Hutchinson.  After working with Professors Bernard Budiansky and James R. Rice as a postdoc for one year, he joined the University of Arizona as an assistant professor in 1991.  He moved to MichiganTechnologicalUniversity as an associate professor in 1995, to the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign (UIUC) in 1998, and was promoted to full professor in 2001.  He was the Grayce Wicall Gauthier Professor at UIUC (2003-2004), and is now the Shao Lee Soo Professor at UIUC (since 2004) and the Clark Millikan Visiting Professor at Caltech (2005-2006).

He has published one book, 15 book chapters, and more than 180 journal papers.  Four of his papers, published in 1999, 2000, 2002 and 2004 respectively, are the most cited mechanics papers and most cited mechanical engineering papers in ISI Web of Science in the corresponding years. His recent awards include Gustus L. Larson Memorial Award (2003) and Melville Medal (2004) from the American Society of Mechanical Engineers; and Young Investigator Medal from the Society of Engineering Science (2006).