General elasticity theory for graphene membranes based on molecular dynamics
Paper i proceeding, 2007
We have studied the mechanical properties of suspended graphene membranes using molecular dynamics (MD) and generalized continuum elasticity theory (GE) in order to develop and assess a continuum description for graphene. The MD simulations are based on a valence force field model which is used to determine the deformation and the elastic energy of the membrane (EMD) as a function of external forces. For the continuum description, we use the expression Econt = Estretching + Ebending for the elastic energy functional. The elastic parameters (tensile rigidity and Poisson ratio) entering Econt are determined by requiring that E cont = EMD for a set of deformations. Comparisons with the MD results show excellent agreement. We find that the elastic energy of a supported graphene sheets is typically dominated by the nonlinear stretching terms whereas a linear description is valid only for very small deflections. This implies that in some applications, i.e. NEMS, a linear description is of limited applicability.