A Catalytic Reaction Inside a Single-Walled Carbon Nanotube


  • H.S. thanks the Alexander von Humboldt foundation. A.G. acknowledges an individual Marie Curie fellowship from the European Union. R.P. acknowledges support from FWF projects P17345 and I83-N20 (ESF IMPRESS). H.K. acknowledges support by the Industrial Technology Research Grant Program in 2003 from the New Energy and Industrial Technology Development Organization (NEDO) of Japan. This work was performed under DFG Pl 440/1/3 and supported in part by a Grant-in-Aid for Scientific Research A (No.18201017) by the Ministry of Education, Culture, Sports, Science, and Technology of Japan. We thank R. Hübel, S. Leger, R. Schönfelder, and H. Klose for technical assistance.


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A catalytic reaction inside a single-walled carbon nanotube is demonstrated by using encapsulated ferrocene molecules as precursors. A combined spectroscopic and microscopic study unravels the mechanism of catalytic inner tube growth. This confined process provides for the controlled iron growing of double-walled carbon nanotubes and represents a new route for materials design.