Authors: A. Buldum and J.P. Lu
Affilation: The University of Akron, United States
Pages: 297 - 300
Keywords: carbon nanotubes, field-emission, modeling
Carbon nanotubes have novel physical properties and they are promising materials for future technological applications. One of the most promising future applications is employing carbon nanotubes in electron field emission devices. Recent experiments showed that nanotubes have excellent field emission properties with high current density at low electric fields. Here, we present theoretical investigations that include geometrical effects and electronic structure of nanotubes. The electric field is dramatically enhanced near the cap of a nanotube with large variation of local field distribution. It is found that the deviation of Fowler-Nordheim behavior is due to the variation of local field in the electron-tunneling region. The maximum current per nanotube is at the order of 10 microA. Atomic scale aspects of field emission and simulated emission patterns will also be presented.