Height and morphology dependent heat dissipation of vertically aligned carbon nanotubes

Yaniv Cohen, Siva K. Reddy, Yahav Ben-Shimon, Assaf Ya'akobovitz

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

18 Scopus citations


The continuous miniaturization of electronic devices substantially increases their power density, and consequently, requires effective cooling of these components. Vertically aligned carbon nanotubes (VA-CNTs) constitute one of the most promising materials for use as a high-end heat dissipation element due to their high thermal conductivity and large surface area. However, the lack of a clear understanding of the heat transfer mechanisms of VA-CNTs has so far impeded their large-scale use as cooling elements. Our infrared micro-thermography analysis revealed that the heat dissipation of VA-CNTs is determined mainly by their height, such that the heat dissipation behavior of tall samples was dominated by convection from the carbon nanotube (CNT) sidewalls. The mechanism of heat transfer in short VA-CNTs, in contrast, was determined by their morphology. Short VA-CNTs with highly organized CNT formations or with low thermal conductance exhibited convective heat dissipation similar to that of tall VA-CNTs, while other short VA-CNTs exhibited heat transfer dominated by conduction along the CNTs. This study provides important guidelines regarding the parameters that can be changed to optimize the performances of VA-CNTs in thermal applications. These applications include cooling elements in electronic devices, where convection is required, or thermal interface materials, where conduction is required.

Original languageEnglish
Article number505705
Issue number50
StatePublished - 27 Sep 2019


  • convection
  • heat dissipation
  • heat transfer
  • vertically aligned carbon nanotubes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Bioengineering
  • General Chemistry
  • General Materials Science
  • Mechanics of Materials
  • Mechanical Engineering
  • Electrical and Electronic Engineering


Dive into the research topics of 'Height and morphology dependent heat dissipation of vertically aligned carbon nanotubes'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this