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The size effect of catalyst on the growth of helical carbon nanofibers

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3 Author(s)
Xia, J.H. ; Institute of Materials Engineering, University of Siegen, Paul-Bonatz-Str. 9-11, 57076 Siegen, Germany ; Jiang, X. ; Jia, C.L.

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Cu-catalyzed carbon nanofibers are investigated by means of transmission electron microscopy. Straight and helical carbon nanofibers are observed to connect to the catalyst particles of octahedron or triangular prism in the samples prepared using the same processing conditions. Statistic analysis of the results leads to evidence that the morphology of the nanofibers depends on the size of the catalyst particles. Small size of catalyst particles favors formation of the helical fibers, while large size of catalysts results in the straight fibers. Based on the observed results, growth, and morphology formation of the carbon nanofibers are discussed. The growth model in which the rotating catalysts catalyze the growth of the carbon nanostructure in a helical way is proposed.

Published in:

Applied Physics Letters  (Volume:95 ,  Issue: 22 )

Date of Publication:

Nov 2009

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