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Novel methods and apparati for continuous production of aligned carbon nanotubes are disclosed. In one aspect, the method comprises dispersion of a metal catalyst in a liquid hydrocarbon to form a feed solution, and volatilizing the feed solution in a reactor through which a substrate is continuously passed to allow growth of nanotubes thereon. In another aspect, the apparatus comprises a reactor, a tube-within-a-tube injector, and a conveyor belt for passing a substrate through the reactor. The present invention further discloses a method for restricting the external diameter of carbon nanotubes produced thereby comprising passing the feed solution through injector tubing of a specified diameter, followed by passing the feed solution through an inert, porous medium. The method and apparati of this invention provide a means for producing aligned carbon nanotubes of a particular external diameter which is suitable for large scale production in an industrial setting.


University of Kentucky Research Foundation, Lexington, KY (US)

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