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Nanotechnology sometimes involves mixing something very small
into a larger, more conventional system. For example, mixing
carbon nanotubes into a conventional polymer gives it added
strength. Or, using a carbon nanotube as the channel between
two larger, source-drain contacts creates a transistor with
improved channel mobility. But simulating such systems becomes
a huge challenge. The smaller parts of the system must be
solved with great accuracy–for example, by simulating each
atom within a carbon nanotube. But the same approach can't
possibly be applied to the larger system–for example, to each
atom in the thousands of polymer molecules in a realistic
sample–or the whole problem would be too big to solve!
Multi-scale methods attempt to solve the problem by stitching
together smaller domains (where atomistic models apply) and
larger domains (where continuum models apply) into a coherent
Learn more about multi-scale methods from the resources on
this site, listed below.
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