Elastic properties of GaN Nanowires: Revealing the influence of planar defects on young's modulus at nanoscale

Sheng Dai, Jiong Zhao, Mo Rigen He, Xiaoguang Wang, Jingchun Wan, Zhiwei Shan, Jing Zhu

Research output: Journal article publicationJournal articleAcademic researchpeer-review

53 Citations (Scopus)


The elastic properties of gallium nitride (GaN) nanowires with different structures were investigated by in situ electron microscopy in this work. The electric-field-induced resonance method was utilized to reveal that the single crystalline GaN nanowires, along [120] direction, had the similar Young's modulus as the bulk value at the diameter ranging 92-110 nm. Meanwhile, the elastic behavior of the obtuse-angle twin (OT) GaN nanowires was disclosed both by the in situ SEM resonance technique and in situ transmission electron microscopy tensile test for the first time. Our results showed that the average Young's modulus of these OT nanowires was greatly decreased to about 66 GPa and indicated no size dependence at the diameter ranging 98-171 nm. A quantitative explanation for this phenomenon is proposed based on the rules of mixtures in classical mechanics. It is revealed that the elastic modulus of one-dimensional nanomaterials is dependent on the relative orientations and the volume fractions of the planar defects.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)8-15
Number of pages8
JournalNano Letters
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 14 Jan 2015
Externally publishedYes


  • elastic behavior
  • GaN nanowires
  • in situ electron microscopy
  • planar defects
  • Young's modulus

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Bioengineering
  • General Chemistry
  • General Materials Science
  • Condensed Matter Physics
  • Mechanical Engineering


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