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Issue 37, 2015
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Controlling pyridinic, pyrrolic, graphitic, and molecular nitrogen in multi-wall carbon nanotubes using precursors with different N/C ratios in aerosol assisted chemical vapor deposition

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Abstract

Nitrogen-containing multi-wall carbon nanotubes (N-MWCNTs) were synthesized using aerosol assisted chemical vapor deposition (CVD) techniques in conjunction with benzylamine:ferrocene or acetonitrile:ferrocene mixtures. Different amounts of toluene were added to these mixtures in order to change the N/C ratio of the feedstock. X-ray photoelectron and near-edge X-ray absorption fine structure spectroscopy detected pyridinic, pyrrolic, graphitic, and molecular nitrogen forms in the N-MWCNT samples. Analysis of the spectral data indicated that whilst the nature of the nitrogen-containing precursor has little effect on the concentrations of the different forms of nitrogen in N-MWCNTs, the N/C ratio in the feedstock appeared to be the determining factor. When the N/C ratio was lower than ca. 0.01, all four forms existed in equal concentrations, for N/C ratios above 0.01, graphitic and molecular nitrogen were dominant. Furthermore, higher concentrations of pyridinic nitrogen in the outer shells and N2 molecules in the core of the as-produced N-MWCNTs suggest that the precursors were decomposed into individual atoms, which interacted with the catalyst surface to form CN and NH species or in fact diffused through the bulk of the catalyst particles. These findings are important for a better understanding of possible growth mechanisms for heteroatom-containing carbon nanotubes (CNTs) and therefore paving the way for controlling the spatial distribution of foreign elements in the CNTs using CVD processes.

Graphical abstract: Controlling pyridinic, pyrrolic, graphitic, and molecular nitrogen in multi-wall carbon nanotubes using precursors with different N/C ratios in aerosol assisted chemical vapor deposition

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Publication details

The article was received on 05 Apr 2015, accepted on 15 Jun 2015 and first published on 15 Jun 2015


Article type: Paper
DOI: 10.1039/C5CP01981H
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Citation: Phys. Chem. Chem. Phys., 2015,17, 23741-23747

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    Controlling pyridinic, pyrrolic, graphitic, and molecular nitrogen in multi-wall carbon nanotubes using precursors with different N/C ratios in aerosol assisted chemical vapor deposition

    L. G. Bulusheva, A. V. Okotrub, Yu. V. Fedoseeva, A. G. Kurenya, I. P. Asanov, O. Y. Vilkov, A. A. Koós and N. Grobert, Phys. Chem. Chem. Phys., 2015, 17, 23741
    DOI: 10.1039/C5CP01981H

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