A single‐step process to produce carbon nanotube‐zinc compound hybrid materials

McGlynn, Ruairi and Brunet, Paul and Chakrabarti, Supriya and Ganguly, Abhijit and Moghaieb, Hussein and Bo, Zheng and Maguire, Paul and Mariotti, Davide (2024) A single‐step process to produce carbon nanotube‐zinc compound hybrid materials. Small Methods, 8 (1). 2300710. ISSN 2366-9608 (https://doi.org/10.1002/smtd.202300710)

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An atmospheric-pressure plasma system is developed and is used to treat carbon nanotube assemblies, producing a hybrid carbon-zinc structure. This system is integrated into a floating-catalyst chemical vapor deposition furnace used for the synthesis of macroscopic assemblies of carbon nanotubes to allow for the in-line, continuous, and single-step production of nano-composite materials. Material is deposited from a sacrificial zinc wire in the form of nanoparticles and can coat the surface of the individual carbon nanotubes as they form. Additionally, it is found that the deposited materials penetrate further into the carbon nanotube matrix than a comparable post-synthesis deposition, improving the uniformity of the material through the thickness. Thus, a single-step metal-based coating and carbon nanotube synthesis process which can form the basis of production scale manufacturing of metal-carbon nanotube composite materials with an atmospheric-pressure plasma system are demonstrated.