Research Article

Nano Research

, Volume 2, Issue 10, pp 800-817

Open Access This content is freely available online to anyone, anywhere at any time.

Synthesis of single-walled carbon nanotubes by induction thermal plasma

  • Keun Su KimAffiliated withDepartment of Chemical Engineering, Université de Sherbrooke
  • , Ala MoradianAffiliated withDepartment of Mechanical and Industrial Engineering, University of Toronto
  • , Javad MostaghimiAffiliated withDepartment of Mechanical and Industrial Engineering, University of Toronto
  • , Yasaman AlinejadAffiliated withDepartment of Chemical Engineering, Université de Sherbrooke
  • , Ali ShahverdiAffiliated withDepartment of Chemical Engineering, Université de Sherbrooke
  • , Benoit SimardAffiliated withSteacie Institute for Molecular Sciences, National Research Council
  • , Gervais SoucyAffiliated withDepartment of Chemical Engineering, Université de Sherbrooke Email author 

Abstract

The production of high quality single-walled carbon nanotubes (SWCNTs) on a bulk scale has been an issue of considerable interest. Recently, it has been demonstrated that high quality SWCNTs can be continuously synthesized on large scale by using induction thermal plasma technology. In this process, the high energy density of the thermal plasma is employed to generate dense vapor-phase precursors for the synthesis of SWCNTs. With the current reactor system, a carbon soot product which contains approximately 40 wt% of SWCNTs can be continuously synthesized at the high production rate of ∼100 g/h. In this article, our recent research efforts to achieve major advances in this technology are presented. Firstly, the processing parameters involved are examined systematically in order to evaluate their individual influences on the SWCNT synthesis. Based on these results, the appropriate operating conditions of the induction thermal plasma process for an effective synthesis of SWCNTs are discussed. A characterization study has also been performed on the SWCNTs produced under the optimum processing conditions. Finally, a mathematical model of the process currently under development is described. The model will help us to better understand the synthesis of SWCNTs in the induction plasma process.

http://static-content.springer.com/image/art%3A10.1007%2Fs12274-009-9085-9/MediaObjects/12274_2009_9085_Fig1_HTML.jpg

Keywords

Single-walled carbon nanotubes (SWCNTs) large-scale continuous synthesis radio frequency (RF) induction thermal plasma optimization numerical modeling