Journal article

Strong Coupling between Nanofluidic Transport and Interfacial Chemistry: How Defect Reactivity Controls Liquid-Solid Friction through Hydrogen Bonding

Defects are inevitably present in nanofluidic systems, yet the role they play in nanofluidic transport remains poorly understood. Here, we report ab initio molecular dynamics (AIMD) simulations of the friction of liquid water on defective graphene and boron nitride sheets. We show that water dissociates at certain defects and that these "reactive" defects lead to much larger friction than the "nonreactive" defects at which water molecules remain intact. Furthermore, we find that friction is extremely sensitive to the chemical structure of reactive defects and to the number of hydrogen bonds they can partake in with the liquid. Finally, we discuss how the insight obtained from AIMD can be used to quantify the influence of defects on friction in nanofluidic devices for water treatment and sustainable energy harvesting. Overall, we provide new insight into the role of interfacial chemistry on nanofluidic transport in real, defective systems.


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