Gel electrophoresis using a selective radical for the separation of single-walled carbon nanotubes
We have applied agarose gel electrophoresis (AGE) to single-walled carbon nanotubes (SWNTs) that have been pre-reacted with metallic-selective ionic radicals and then re-suspended with sodium cholate (SC) surfactant to obtain highly purified (up to 98%) semiconducting single-walled carbon nanotubes (s-SWNTs). The proposed combination method exploits the preferential reactivity with the metallic nanotube of the radicals generated from an azo naphthalene compound (Direct Blue 71 (I)) to preferentially increase the surface charge, and therefore the electrophoretic mobilities, of the metallic nanotube population under the influence of the electric field in AGE. The excellent separation achieved was verified by UV-vis-NIR and Raman spectroscopy as well as by the performance of field effect transistors fabricated with semiconducting-enriched SWNTs. FETs fabricated with I-assisted AGE-separated semiconducting nanotubes exhibited mobilities of ∼3.6 to 11.7 cm2 V−1 s−1 and on/off ratios from 102 to 106.
- This article is part of the themed collection: New Advances in Carbon Nanomaterials