Aggregation kinetics of single-walled carbon nanotubes investigated using mechanically wrapped multinuclear complexes: probing the tube–tube repulsive barrier

  • Anjail A. Ameen, Andrea N. Giordano, Jeffrey R. Alston, Michael W. Forney, Natalie P. Herring, Shiho Kobayashi, Shawn G. Ridlen, Sarah S. Subaran, Thomas J. Younts, J. C. Poler
  • Physical Chemistry Chemical Physics, January 2014, Royal Society of Chemistry
  • DOI: 10.1039/c3cp55530e

Explaining SWCNT dispersion stability and aggregation kinetics

What is it about?

We compare two models describing dispersions of Single-Walled Carbon Nanotubes without the use of surfactants. Molecular dynamics studies have suggested that structured solvent layers around SWCNTs or graphene sheets are responsible for the dispersion stability of these nanostructured carbon materials. We have shown that these models fall short and do not fully explain the stability of the dispersions or the aggregation kinetics of them. Rather we show that modified DLVO type forces dominate.

Why is it important?

In order to use nanomaterials for devices or manufacturing processes they must be dispersed into a liquid medium. Because of the high surface area of nanomaterials they aggregated thereby losing the intrinsic properties for which they where designed. Moreover, most nanomaterials cannot be dispersed at high concentration making manufacturing processes inefficient. This can be overcome by adding surfactants. However, surfactants cover up the most useful part of the nanoparticle's surface.

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The following have contributed to this page: Jordan Poler