• Carbon nanocoils;
  • Catalyst;
  • Facet;
  • Geometric structure;
  • Growth mechanism


The relationship between the geometric structures of catalyst particles and the growth of carbon nanocoils (CNCs) is investigated. It is found that the CNCs usually consist of over two, but less than five tubules. The catalyst particles at the tips of CNCs are all polyhedron structures, in most cases, hexahedron. It is considered that a catalyst particle has two kinds of crystal facets, the catalytically active facet and the carbon precipitation facet. The active facet mainly plays the roles of decomposition of hydrocarbon and diffusion of the formed carbon atoms, while carbon tubules are grown from the precipitation facets and twisted to form a carbon coil. Catalysts with different numbers of active facets and geometric structures form different types of CNCs.