Transition-metal catalysts, fullerenes, graphitic carbon, amorphous carbon, and graphite flakes are the main impurities in carbon nanotubes. In this study, we demonstrate an easy and optimum method of cleaning SWCNTs and evaluating their purity. The purification method, which employed oxidative heat treatment followed by 6M HNO<sub>3</sub>, H<sub>2</sub>SO<sub>4</sub>, HNO<sub>3</sub>:H<sub>2</sub>SO<sub>4</sub> and HCl acid reflux for 6h at 120°C and microwave digestion with 1.5M HNO<sub>3</sub> for 0.5h at 210°C which was straightforward, inexpensive, and fairly effective. The purified materials were characterized by thermogravimetric analysis and nuclear techniques such as INAA, XRF and XRD.
Having remarkable characteristics, carbon nanotubes (CNTs) have attracted a lot of interest. Their mechanical, electrical, thermal and chemical properties make CNTs suitable for several applications such as electronic devices, hydrogen storage, textile, drug delivery etc. CNTs have been synthesized by various methods, such as arc discharge, laser ablation and catalytic chemical vapor deposition (CCVD). In comparison with the other techniques, CCVD is widely used as it offers a promising route for mass production. High capability of decomposing hydrocarbon formation is desired for the selected catalysts. Therefore, transition metals which are in the nanometer scale are the most effective catalysts. The common transition metals that are being used are Fe, Co, Ni and their binary alloys. The impregnation of the catalysts over the support material has a crucial importance for the CNT production. In this study, the influence of the support materials on the catalytic activity of metals was investigated. CNTs have been synthesized over alumina (Al<sub>2</sub>O<sub>3</sub>), silica (SiO<sub>2</sub>) and magnesium oxide (MgO) supported Fe, Co, Fe-Co catalysts. Catalyst – support material combinations have been investigated and optimum values for each were compared. Single walled carbon nanotubes (SWCNTs) were produced at 800°C. The duration of synthesis was 30 minutes for all support materials. The synthesized materials were characterized by thermal gravimetric analysis (TGA), Raman spectroscopy and transmission electron microscopy.
Carbon nanotubes (CNTs) with their high mechanical, electrical, thermal and chemical properties are regarded as promising materials for many different potential applications. Chemical vapor deposition (CVD) is a common method for CNT synthesis especially for mass production. There are important parameters (synthesis temperature, catalyst and calcination conditions, substrate, carbon source, synthesis time, H<sub>2</sub> reduction, etc.) affecting the structure, morphology and the amount of the CNT synthesis. In this study, CNTs were synthesized by CVD of acetylene (C<sub>2</sub>H<sub>2</sub>) on magnesium oxide (MgO) powder substrate impregnated by iron nitrate (Fe (NO<sub>3</sub>)<sub>3</sub>•9H<sub>2</sub>O) solution. The synthesis conditions were as follows: at catalyst calcination temperatures of 400 and 550°C, calcination time of 0, 15, 30 and 45 min, hydrogen concentrations of 0, 50 and 100 % vol, synthesis temperature of 800°C and synthesis time of 30 minutes. The synthesized materials were characterized by thermal gravimetric analysis (TGA), transmission electron microscopy (TEM), X ray diffraction (XRD) and Raman spectroscopy. Effects of H<sub>2</sub> reduction on catalyst calcination and CNT synthesis were investigated.