Vertically aligned carbon nanotube (VACNT) arrays grown on ceramic spheres are obtained from ethylene using a floating catalysis process. The exhaust gas mainly contains light gaseous hydrocarbons, which decreases the contamination at the outlet of the reactor. Linear synchronous growth of the VACNT arrays is demonstrated and the morphology evolution of VACNT array grown on spheres is shown. The VACNT arrays on the spheres crack radially into a flower-like structure when the length of CNT is above 400 μm. The VACNT arrays grown on spheres still possess good flowability even when the length of the array reaches 1100 μm after a 2-h growth at 800 °C. The arrays on the spheres show good alignment, high purity and good graphitization. Meanwhile, with a decrease in temperature, the diameter of CNTs in the array correspondingly decreases, the distribution becomes narrower, and the growth rate decreases. The apparent activation energy is 180 ± 8 kJ/mol, indicating that ethylene is a good carbon source for fast and continuous radial growth of millimeter VACNT arrays on ceramic spheres.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Materials Science(all)