A microelectromechanical system for nano-scale testing of one dimensional nanostructures

B. Peng, Y. Zhu, I. Petrov, H. D. Espinosa*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

8 Scopus citations


In situ electron microscopy tensile tests of nanowires and carbon nanotubes performed using a MEMS-based material testing system are reported. The development of the material testing system (previously reported elsewhere 23-26) is briefly reviewed. This system, consisting of a surface micromachined actuator and load sensor, makes possible continuous observation of specimen deformation and failure with sub-nanometer resolution, while simultaneously measuring the applied load electronically with nanonewton resolution. This letter begins with a brief review of some of the methods used in mechanical characterization of nanoscale specimens, followed by a description of the MEMS-based material testing system. Finally, emphasis is placed on experimental results demonstrating the advantages of the MEMS-based system.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)76-87
Number of pages12
JournalSensor Letters
Issue number1
StatePublished - Feb 2008


  • Carbon nanotube
  • Material testing
  • Nanowire

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Atomic and Molecular Physics, and Optics
  • Electrical and Electronic Engineering


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