We report the direct formation of multiwalled carbon nanotubes (MWNT) by ultrasonication of graphite in dimethylformamide (DMF) upon addition of ferrocene aldehyde (Fc-CHO). The tubular structures appear exclusively at the edges of graphene layers and contain Fe clusters. Fc in conjunction with benzyl aldehyde, or other Fc derivatives, does not induce formation of NT. Higher amounts of Fc-CHO added to the dispersion do not increase significantly MWNT formation. Increasing the temperature reduces the amount of formation of MWNTs and shows the key role of ultrasound-induced cavitation energy. It is concluded that Fc-CHO first reduces the concentration of radical reactive species that slice graphene into small moieties, localizes itself at the edges of graphene, templates the rolling up of a sheet to form a nanoscroll, where it remains trapped, and finally accepts and donates unpaired electron to the graphene edges and converts the less stable scroll into a MWNT. This new methodology matches the long held notion that CNTs are rolled up graphene layers. The proposed mechanism is general and will lead to control the production of carbon nanostructures by simple ultrasonication treatments.

A Simple Road for the Transformation of Few-Layer Graphene into MWNTs

CALVARESI, MATTEO;ZERBETTO, FRANCESCO;
2012

Abstract

We report the direct formation of multiwalled carbon nanotubes (MWNT) by ultrasonication of graphite in dimethylformamide (DMF) upon addition of ferrocene aldehyde (Fc-CHO). The tubular structures appear exclusively at the edges of graphene layers and contain Fe clusters. Fc in conjunction with benzyl aldehyde, or other Fc derivatives, does not induce formation of NT. Higher amounts of Fc-CHO added to the dispersion do not increase significantly MWNT formation. Increasing the temperature reduces the amount of formation of MWNTs and shows the key role of ultrasound-induced cavitation energy. It is concluded that Fc-CHO first reduces the concentration of radical reactive species that slice graphene into small moieties, localizes itself at the edges of graphene, templates the rolling up of a sheet to form a nanoscroll, where it remains trapped, and finally accepts and donates unpaired electron to the graphene edges and converts the less stable scroll into a MWNT. This new methodology matches the long held notion that CNTs are rolled up graphene layers. The proposed mechanism is general and will lead to control the production of carbon nanostructures by simple ultrasonication treatments.
JOURNAL OF THE AMERICAN CHEMICAL SOCIETY
M. Quintana; M. Grzelczak; K. Spyrou; M. Calvaresi; S. Bals ; B. Kooi; G. Van Tendeloo; P. Rudolf; F. Zerbetto; M. Prato
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: http://hdl.handle.net/11585/134255
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