A new method has been developed to precisely cut and to sharpen carbon nanotubes using a “nanoknife”, which is a short carbon nanotube adhered to a metal tip. The mechanism for the cutting and the sharpening was proposed to be local vaporization of carbon caused by Joule heating. The “nanoknife” was also found useful to cut other nanotubes and nanowires. The cutting process was also found useful to construct complex carbon nanotube structures.

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