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Publication details for Professor Michael Petty

Massey, M. K., Kotsialos, A., Qaiser, F., Zeze, D. A., Pearson, C., Volpati, D., Bowen, L. & Petty, M. C. (2015). Computing with carbon nanotubes: optimization of threshold logic gates using disordered nanotube/polymer composites. Journal of Applied Physics 117(13): 134903.

Author(s) from Durham


This paper explores the use of single-walled carbon nanotube (SWCNT)/poly(butyl methacrylate) composites as a material for use in unconventional computing. The mechanical and electrical properties of the materials are investigated. The resulting data reveal a correlation between the SWCNT concentration/viscosity/conductivity and the computational capability of the composite. The viscosity increases significantly with the addition of SWCNTs to the polymer, mechanically reinforcing the host material and changing the electrical properties of the composite. The electrical conduction is found to depend strongly on the nanotube concentration; Poole-Frenkel conduction appears to dominate the conductivity at very low concentrations (0.11% by weight). The viscosity and conductivity both show a threshold point around 1% SWCNT concentration; this value is shown to be related to the computational performance of the material. A simple optimization of threshold logic gates shows that satisfactory computation is only achieved above a SWCNT concentration of 1%. In addition, there is some evidence that further above this threshold the computational efficiency begins to decrease.