Self-organization of nitrogen-doped carbon nanotubes into double-helix structures

Gui Li Tian, Meng Qiang Zhao, Qiang Zhang, Jia Qi Huang, Fei Wei

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

41 Scopus citations


Self-organization of nitrogen-doped carbon nanotube (N-CNT) double helices was achieved by chemical vapor deposition (CVD) with Fe-Mg-Al layered double hydroxides (LDHs) as the catalyst precursor. The as-obtained N-CNT double helix exhibited a closely packed nanostructure with a catalyst flake on the tip, which connected the two CNT strands on both sides of the flake. A mechanism for the self-organization of N-CNTs into double-helix structures with a moving catalyst head is proposed. Effective carbon/nitrogen sources, high-density active catalyst nanoparticles, space confinement, and the precise chiral match between the two CNT strands are found to be crucial for the N-CNT double helix formation. The morphologies of N-CNTs can be well tuned between bamboo-like and cup-stacked structures, and a CNT/N-CNT heterojunction can be constructed by changing the carbon feedstock from C 2H 4 to CH 3CN during CVD growth. N-CNT double helices with a length of 10-36 μm, a screw pitch of 1-2 μm, a CNT diameter of 6-10 nm, and a N-content of 2.59 at.% can be synthesized on the LDH catalysts by the efficient CVD growth.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)5323-5330
Number of pages8
Issue number14
StatePublished - Nov 2012
Externally publishedYes

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • General Chemistry
  • General Materials Science


Dive into the research topics of 'Self-organization of nitrogen-doped carbon nanotubes into double-helix structures'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this