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Single-Walled Carbon Nanotubes with Small Diameter, Controlled Density and Defined Locations Produced from Catalyst-Containing Polymer Films

J. Lu, T.E. Kopley, M. Hueschen, N. Moll, J. Bai, D.Y.Q. Fu, J. Liu, D. Rider, I. Manners and M.A. Winnik
Agilent Technologies, US

Keywords:
diblock copolymers, nanotemplate, carbon nanotubes, biological applications

Abstract:
We report using catalyst-containing block copolymers as nanotemplates to produce various catalyst nanoclusters or catalyst-containing inorganic nanostructures with controlled size and spacing for carbon nanotube growth. Carbon nanotubes (CNTs) produced from these types of polymer-based systems have small numbers of defects and dangling bonds. By spin coating the catalyst-containing block copolymer precursors, ultrathin uniform films can be formed which allows us to produce uniformly distributed CNTs across a large surface area. The typical diameters of CNTs produced from all these catalysts are less than 2nm. In the case when CNTs are grown from catalytically active catalyst-containing inorganic nanostructures, CNTs with diameters of 1nm or less have been observed. Using the excellent process capability imparted by polymer materials, we have been able to achieve selective growth of carbon nanotubes on predefined locations over a large area. High density and highly regular nanotube arrays can enable a multitude of biological and electronic devices and applications. Potential applications will be discussed.

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