A finite-temperature continuum theory based on interatomic potentials

H. Jiang, Y. Huang, K. C. Hwang

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

86 Scopus citations


There are significant efforts to develop continuum theories based on atomistic models. These atomistic-based continuum theories are limited to zero temperature (T=0 K). We have developed a finite-temperature continuum theory based on interatomic potentials. The effect of finite temperature is accounted for via the local harmonic approximation, which relates the entropy to the vibration frequencies of the system, and the latter are determined from the interatomic potential. The focus of this theory is to establish the continuum constitutive model in terms of the interatomic potential and temperature. We have studied the temperature dependence of specific heat and coefficient of thermal expansion of graphene and diamond, and have found good agreements with the experimental data without any parameter fitting. We have also studied the temperature dependence of Young's modulus and bifurcation strain of single-wall carbon nanotubes.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)408-416
Number of pages9
JournalJournal of Engineering Materials and Technology, Transactions of the ASME
Issue number4
StatePublished - Oct 2005
Externally publishedYes


  • Constitutive Model
  • Finite Temperature
  • Interatomic Potential
  • Local Harmonic Approximation

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Materials Science(all)
  • Condensed Matter Physics
  • Mechanics of Materials
  • Mechanical Engineering


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