Novel method to make nanomaterials discovered

Feb 24, 2012

Researchers at the NanoScience Center of the University of Jyväskylä, Finland, and at Harvard University, have discovered a novel way to make nanomaterials. Using computer simulations, the researchers have been able to predict that long and narrow graphene nanoribbons can be rolled into carbon nanotubes by means of twisting. The research has received funding from the Academy of Finland.

The basic idea is simple and easily explained: just twist the ends of a strap on your backpack and watch what happens. Being classical in origin, the is robust and valid on the macro-, micro- and nanoscale.

The mechanism also enables experimental control, which has earlier been impossible. The mechanism can be used to make various kinds of novel nanotubes, to encapsulate molecules insides the tubes, or to make tubules from ribbons made out of other planar nanomaterials.

For the past twenty years, carbon nanotubes have been described as "rolled-up graphenes", even though no-one ever really did the rolling. Today, nanotubes, along with many other , are made by atom-by-atom growth.

The results were published in Physical Review B. Besides being granted the status "Editor's Suggestion", the research was also highlighted in the esteemed Physics special journal of the American Physical Society. The research used the computer resources of the Finnish IT Centre for Science (CSC), based in Espoo.

Explore further: Materials for the next generation of electronics and photovoltaics

More information: O.O. Kit, T. Tallinen, L. Mahadevan J. Timonen, P. Koskinen. "Twisting Graphene Nanoribbons into Carbon Nanotubes". Physical Review B. 85, 085428 (2012) prb.aps.org/abstract/PRB/v85/i8/e085428

add to favorites email to friend print save as pdf

Related Stories

Nanotube's 'tapestry' controls its growth

Feb 05, 2009

HOUSTON -- (Feb. 5, 2009) -- Rice University materials scientists have put a new "twist" on carbon nanotube growth. The researchers found the highly touted nanomaterials grow like tiny molecular tapestries, ...

Unzipping Carbon Nanotubes Can Make Graphene Ribbons

Apr 20, 2009

(PhysOrg.com) -- By "unzipping" carbon nanotubes, researchers have shown how to make flat graphene ribbons. Graphene, which is a one-atom-thick sheet of carbon that looks like chicken wire, has unique electrical ...

Titanate cigarette filter could be safer

May 04, 2011

(PhysOrg.com) -- While current cigarettes are made with a filter created from cellulose acetate which absorbs things like nicotine, tar, and polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons, Chinese researchers have discovered ...

Recommended for you

Energy storage of the future

Oct 20, 2014

Personal electronics such as cell phones and laptops could get a boost from some of the lightest materials in the world.

User comments : 0