Open Access Nano Express

Numerical analysis of the electrical failure of a metallic nanowire mesh due to Joule heating

Yuan Li*, Kaoru Tsuchiya, Hironori Tohmyoh and Masumi Saka

Author affiliations

Department of Nanomechanics, Tohoku University, Aoba 6-6-01, Aoba-ku, Sendai 980-8579, Japan

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Citation and License

Nanoscale Research Letters 2013, 8:370  doi:10.1186/1556-276X-8-370

Published: 30 August 2013


To precisely examine the electrical failure behavior of a metallic nanowire mesh induced by Joule heating (i.e., melting), a previously developed numerical method was modified with regard to the maximum temperature in the mesh and the electrical resistivity of the nanowire. A sample case of an Ag nanowire mesh under specific working conditions was analyzed with highly accurate numerical results. By monitoring the temperature in the mesh, the current required to trigger the melting of a mesh segment (i.e., the melting current) could be obtained. The melting process of a mesh equipped with a current source during actual operation was predicted on the basis of the obtained relationship between the melting current and the corresponding melting voltage in the numerical melting process. Local unstable and stable melting could be precisely identified for both the current-controlled and voltage-controlled current sources in the present example.

Electrical failure; Joule heating; Metallic nanowire mesh; Stable/unstable melting