Water-Assisted Highly Efficient Synthesis of Impurity-Free Single-Walled Carbon Nanotubes

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Science  19 Nov 2004:
Vol. 306, Issue 5700, pp. 1362-1364
DOI: 10.1126/science.1104962

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We demonstrate the efficient chemical vapor deposition synthesis of single-walled carbon nanotubes where the activity and lifetime of the catalysts are enhanced by water. Water-stimulated enhanced catalytic activity results in massive growth of superdense and vertically aligned nanotube forests with heights up to 2.5 millimeters that can be easily separated from the catalysts, providing nanotube material with carbon purity above 99.98%. Moreover, patterned, highly organized intrinsic nanotube structures were successfully fabricated. The water-assisted synthesis method addresses many critical problems that currently plague carbon nanotube synthesis.

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