Journal of Materials Science

, Volume 54, Issue 13, pp 9352–9361 | Cite as

Facile synthesis of oil adsorbent carbon microtubes by pyrolysis of plant tissues

  • Wu ZhaoEmail author
  • Weiping Jia
  • Manzhang Xu
  • Jianxin Wang
  • Yiming Li
  • Zhiyong Zhang
  • Yingnan Wang
  • Lu Zheng
  • Qiang Li
  • Jiangni Yun
  • Junfeng Yan
  • Xuewen WangEmail author
  • Zheng LiuEmail author
Chemical routes to materials


Inspired by the nature of plant tissue, carbon nanomaterials such as nanofibers have been synthesized by pyrolysis of plant tissues. However, it is challenging in synthesis of tubular structure by pyrolysis because the structure is dynamical non-steady state and always collapses in carbonization process. Herein, carbon microtubes were synthesized by a simple carbonization method-based kapok. The tubular structure with the diameter ranges from 5 to 20 μm was obtained from the final carbon samples, which shows the similar structure with kapok precursors, while the weight was lost about 90%. We demonstrated that the carbon microtubes have excellent performance in oil adsorption with the adsorption capacity of ~ 190 g g−1, which is 1.5 times larger than that of raw kapok. We found that it is reusable for more than ten times in oil adsorption application, and the adsorption capacities of carbon microtubes significantly enhanced when the temperature increased in carbonization.



This work is supported by the National Natural Science Foundation of China (61804125), the Key Program for International Science and Technology Cooperation Projects of Shaanxi Province (2018KWZ-08), the Foundation of the Education Department of Shaanxi Province (18JK0772 and 18JK0780), the Northwest University Doctorate Dissertation of Excellence Funds (YYB17020), the Singapore National Research Foundation under NRF Award (No. NRF-RF2013-08) and MOE under AcRF Tier 2 (MOE2016-T2-1-131).

Compliance with ethical standards

Conflicts of interest

The authors declare no competing financial interest.


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© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC, part of Springer Nature 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.School of Information Science and TechnologyNorthwest UniversityXi’anPeople’s Republic of China
  2. 2.School of Materials Science and EngineeringNanyang Technological UniversitySingaporeSingapore
  3. 3.Institute of Flexible ElectronicsNorthwestern Polytechnical UniversityXi’anPeople’s Republic of China
  4. 4.NOVITAS, Nanoelectronics Centre of Excellence, School of Electrical and Electronic EngineeringNanyang Technological UniversitySingaporeSingapore

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