Carbon Nanotubes with Graphitic Wings


  • This work was supported by the National Science Foundation (RPI), the U.S. Department of Energy, Offices of Science and of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy, under contract #W-31–109-ENG-38 (ANL) and the European Commission IHP Network “Fullerene like-Materials”. CE acknowledges funding from the European COMELCAN network. Electron microscopy imaging was carried out in the Electron Microscopy Center at Argonne National Laboratory, which is supported by the Office of Science.


Graphitic platelets (wings) on carbon nanotubes are produced using a new two-step chemical vapor deposition method (see Figure and inside cover). Chemical attack during the process, aided by curvature-induced strain, rips open the outer nanotube walls and produces an irregular and corrugated surface. The new morphology, which presents a highly modulated and active nanotube surface, could facilitate posterior functionalization or direct composite fabrication.