B.N. Wang, R.D. Bennett, E. Verploegen, A.J. Hart, R.E. Cohen. J. Physical Chemistry C 111(16):5859-5865, 2007. [http://dx.doi.org/10.1021/jp068895a]
Films of multiwall carbon nanotubes (MWCNTs) grown by thermal chemical vapor deposition were studied using small-angle X-ray scattering (SAXS). We assessed the extent of alignment of carbon nanotubes (CNTs) by examining relative SAXS intensities as a function of azimuthal angle. We also identified features in the SAXS patterns that correspond well to CNT diameters measured through high-resolution transmission electron microscopy. For the case of thick films, corresponding to CNTs with lengths on the order of a millimeter, we were able to study the morphology of the films as a function of distance from the catalyst substrate. We examined two different films in which the morphologies of CNTs range from vertically aligned to entangled and tortuous. We determined that the alignment of CNTs as well as their average diameter can vary significantly throughout the film, demonstrating the utility of SAXS for quantitative structural analysis of CNT films, indicating the potential to reveal new information about the CNT growth process, and relating variations in morphology to evolution of the catalyst and reaction conditions.
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