Since the discovery of fullerene, carbon materials with reduced dimensionality have been considered among the most interesting systems in materials science because of their large implication in nanotechnology. In particular, carbon nanotubes (CNTs) and other one-dimensional carbon systems are considered very promising for their appealing mechanical, optical and electronic properties. Many CNTs synthesis methods are based on the ignition of hot carbon plasmas [1, 2], such as in the case of the laser ablation of carbon targets or in the case of arc discharge processes between two graphite electrodes. These experiments are generally carried out in vacuum or inert atmospheres, while only a limited number of studies have been reported in liquid environments . Despite this, the use of a liquid as an environment during the process has the advantage to skip any vacuum system, leading to a cheaper production way and gives the possibility to study the effect of different chemical species on the growth process. Moreover the analysis of the liquid after the plasma ignition is interesting since the trapped species can be easily analyzed and simply correlated to specific, active components during the nanocarbons formation. By using both laser ablation and arc discharge approaches, this paper intends to analyze, compare and discuss the species formed during the plasma ignition and trapped in the liquid phase, correlating them with some features of the nanostructures (mainly carbon nanotubes) formed at the cathode during the arcing procedures.
1 Mar 2010
Volume: 12 Issue: 3 Pages: 456
Journal of Optoelectronics and Advanced Materials