Tuning the redox activity of encapsulated metal clusters via the metallic and semiconducting character of carbon nanotubes.
ABSTRACT: We demonstrate that reactions confined within single-walled carbon nanotube (SWCNT) channels are modulated by the metallic and semiconducting character of the hosts. In situ Raman and X-ray absorption near-edge structure spectroscopies provide complementary information about the electronic state of carbon nanotubes and the encapsulated rhenium species, which reveal electronic interactions between encapsulated species and nanotubes. More electrons are transferred from metallic tubes (m-SWCNTs) to oxidic rhenium clusters, leading to a lower valence state rhenium oxide than that in semiconducting tubes (s-SWCNTs). Reduction in 3.5% (vol/vol) H2/Ar leads to weakened host-guest electronic interaction. The high valence state Re within s-SWCNTs is more readily reduced when raising the temperature, whereas only a sluggish change is observed for Re within m-SWCNTs. Only at 400 °C does Re reach a similar electronic state (mixture of Re(0) and Re(4+)) in both types of tubes. Subsequent oxidation in 1% O2/Ar does not show changes for Re in s-SWCNTs up to 200 °C. In comparison, m-SWCNTs facilitate the oxidation of reduced rhenium (160 °C). This can be exploited for rational design of active catalysts with stable species as a desired valence state can be obtained by selecting specific-type SWCNTs and a controlled thermal treatment. These results also provide a chemical approach to modulate reversibly the electronic structure of SWCNTs without damaging the sidewalls of SWCNTs.
Project description:The electronic properties of single-walled carbon nanotubes (SWCNTs) are potentially useful for electronics, optics, and sensing applications. Depending on the chirality and diameter, individual SWCNTs can be classified as semiconducting (S-SWCNT) or metallic (M-SWCNT). From a biological perspective, the hazard profiling of purified metallic versus semiconducting SWCNTs has been pursued only in bacteria, with the conclusion that aggregated M-SWCNTs are more damaging to bacterial membranes than S-SWCNTs. However, no comparative studies have been performed in a mammalian system, where most toxicity studies have been undertaken using relatively crude SWCNTs that include a M:S mix at 1:2 ratio. In order to compare the toxicological impact of SWCNTs sorted to enrich them for each of the chirality on pulmonary cells and the intact lung, we used density gradient ultracentrifugation and extensive rinsing to prepare S- and M-SWCNTs that are >98% purified. In vitro screening showed that both tube variants trigger similar amounts of interleukin 1? (IL-1?) and transforming growth factor (TGF-?1) production in THP-1 and BEAS-2B cells, without cytotoxicity. Oropharyngeal aspiration confirmed that both SWCNT variants induce comparable fibrotic effects in the lung and abundance of IL-1? and TGF-?1 release in the bronchoalveolar lavage fluid. There was also no change in the morphology, membrane integrity, and viability of E. coli, in contradistinction to the previously published effects of aggregated tubes on the bacterial membrane. Collectively, these data indicate that the electronic properties and chirality do not independently impact SWCNT toxicological impact in the lung, which is of significance to the safety assessment and incremental use of purified tubes by industry.
Project description:The potential of single-walled carbon nanotubes (SWCNTs) to outperform silicon in electronic application was finally enabled through selective separation of semiconducting nanotubes from the as-synthesized statistical mix with polymeric dispersants. Such separation methods provide typically high semiconducting purity samples with narrow diameter distribution, i.e. almost single chiralities. But for a wide range of applications high purity mixtures of small and large diameters are sufficient or even required. Here we proof that weak field centrifugation is a diameter independent method for enrichment of semiconducting nanotubes. We show that the non-selective and strong adsorption of polyarylether dispersants on nanostructured carbon surfaces enables simple separation of diverse raw materials with different SWCNT diameter. In addition and for the first time, we demonstrate that increased temperature enables higher purity separation. Furthermore we show that the mode of action behind this electronic enrichment is strongly connected to both colloidal stability and protonation. By giving simple access to electronically sorted SWCNTs of any diameter, the wide dynamic range of weak field centrifugation can provide economical relevance to SWCNTs.
Project description:Semiconducting single-walled carbon nanotubes (s-SWCNTs) are considered as a replacement for silicon in field-effect transistors (FETs), solar cells, logic circuits, and so forth, because of their outstanding electronic, optical, and mechanical properties. Herein, we have studied the reaction of pristine SWCNTs dispersed in a pluronic F-68 (PF-68) polymer solution with para-amino diphenylamine diazonium sulfate (PADDS) to separate nanotubes based on their metallicity. The preferential selectivity of the reactions was monitored by changes in the semiconducting (S<sub>22</sub> and S<sub>33</sub>) and metallic (M<sub>11</sub>) bands by ultraviolet-visible-near infrared spectroscopy. Metallic selectivity depended on the concentrations of PADDS, reaction time, and the solution pH. Furthermore, separation of pure s-SWCNTs was confirmed by Raman spectroscopy and Fourier-transform infrared spectroscopy. After the removal of metallic SWCNTs, direct current electric field was applied to the pure s-SWCNT solution, which effectively directed the nanotubes to align in one direction as nanotube arrays with a longer length and high density. After that, electrically aligned s-SWCNT solution was cast on a silicon substrate, and the length of the nanotube arrays was measured as ?2 to ?14 ?m with an areal density of ?2 to ?20 tubes/?m of s-SWCNTs. Next, electrically aligned s-SWCNT arrays were deposited on the channel of the FET device by drop-casting. Field-emission scanning electron microscopy and electrical measurements have been carried out to test the performance of the aligned s-SWCNTs/FETs. The fabricated FETs with a channel length of 10 ?m showed stable electrical properties with a field-effect mobility of 30.4 cm<sup>2</sup>/Vs and a log<sub>10</sub> (<i>I</i> <sub>on</sub>/<i>I</i> <sub>off</sub>) current ratio of 3.96. We envisage that this new chemical-based separation method and electric field-assisted alignment could be useful to obtain a high-purity and aligned s-SWCNT array network for the fabrication of high-performance FETs to use in digital and analog electronics.
Project description:Solution-processed networks of semiconducting, single-walled carbon nanotubes (SWCNTs) have attracted considerable attention as materials for next-generation electronic devices and circuits. However, the impact of the SWCNT network composition on charge transport on a microscopic level remains an open and complex question. Here, we use charge-modulated absorption and photoluminescence spectroscopy to probe exclusively the mobile charge carriers in monochiral (6,5) and mixed SWCNT network field-effect transistors. Ground-state bleaching and charge-induced trion absorption features as well as exciton quenching are observed depending on applied voltage and modulation frequency. Through correlation of the modulated mobile carrier density and the optical response of the nanotubes, we find that charge transport in mixed SWCNT networks depends strongly on the diameter and thus bandgap of the individual species. Mobile charges are preferentially transported by small bandgap SWCNTs especially at low gate voltages, whereas large bandgap species only start to participate at higher carrier concentrations. Our results demonstrate the excellent suitability of modulation spectroscopy to investigate charge transport in nanotube network transistors and highlight the importance of SWCNT network composition for their performance.
Project description:As narrow optical bandgap materials, semiconducting single-walled carbon nanotubes (SWCNTs) are rarely regarded as charge donors in photoinduced charge-transfer (PCT) reactions. However, the unique band structure and unusual exciton dynamics of SWCNTs add more possibilities to the classical PCT mechanism. In this work, we demonstrate PCT from photoexcited semiconducting (6,5) SWCNTs to a wide-bandgap wrapping poly-[(9,9-dioctylfluorenyl-2,7-diyl)-<i>alt</i>-(6,6')-(2,2'-bipyridine)] (PFO-BPy) via femtosecond transient absorption spectroscopy. By monitoring the spectral dynamics of the SWCNT polaron, we show that charge transfer from photoexcited SWCNTs to PFO-BPy can be driven not only by the energetically favorable E<sub>33</sub> transition but also by the energetically unfavorable E<sub>22</sub> excitation under high pump fluence. This unusual PCT from narrow-bandgap SWCNTs toward a wide-bandgap polymer originates from the up-converted high-energy excitonic state (E<sub>33</sub> or higher) that is promoted by the Auger recombination of excitons and charge carriers in SWCNTs. These insights provide new pathways for charge separation in SWCNT-based photodetectors and photovoltaic cells.
Project description:Incorporation of as prepared single-walled carbon nanotubes (SWCNTs) into the electron transporting layer (ETL) is an effective strategy to enhance the photovoltaic performance of perovskite solar cells (PSCs). However, the fundamental role of the SWCNT electrical types in the PSCs is not well understood. Herein, we prepared semiconducting (s-) and metallic (m-) SWCNT families and integrated them into TiO<sub>2</sub> photoelectrodes of the PSCs. Based on experimental and theoretical studies, we found that the electrical type of the nanotubes plays an important role in the devices. In particular, the mixture of s-SWCNTs and m-SWCNTs (2:1 w/w)-based PSCs exhibited a remarkable efficiency of up to 19.35%, which was significantly higher than that of the best control cell (17.04%). In this class of PSCs, semiconducting properties of s-SWCNTs play a critical role in extracting and transporting electrons, whereas m-SWCNTs provide high conductance throughout the electrode.
Project description:The identification of scalable processes that transfer random mixtures of single-walled carbon nanotubes (SWCNTs) into fractions featuring a high content of semiconducting species is crucial for future application of SWCNTs in high-performance electronics. Herein we demonstrate a highly efficient and simple separation method that relies on selective interactions between tailor-made amphiphilic polymers and semiconducting SWCNTs in the presence of low viscosity separation media. High purity individualized semiconducting SWCNTs or even self-organized semiconducting sheets are separated from an as-produced SWCNT dispersion via a single weak field centrifugation run. Absorption and Raman spectroscopy are applied to verify the high purity of the obtained SWCNTs. Furthermore SWCNT - network field-effect transistors were fabricated, which exhibit high ON/OFF ratios (10(5)) and field-effect mobilities (17?cm(2)/Vs). In addition to demonstrating the feasibility of high purity separation by a novel low complexity process, our method can be readily transferred to large scale production.
Project description:Single-walled carbon nanotubes (SWCNTs) remain one of the most promising materials of our times. One of the goals is to implement semiconducting and metallic SWCNTs in photonics and microelectronics, respectively. In this work, we demonstrated how such materials could be obtained from the parent material by using the aqueous two-phase extraction method (ATPE) at a large scale. We also developed a dedicated process on how to harvest the SWCNTs from the polymer matrices used to form the biphasic system. The technique is beneficial as it isolates SWCNTs with high purity while simultaneously maintaining their surface intact. To validate the utility of the metallic and semiconducting SWCNTs obtained this way, we transformed them into thin free-standing films and characterized their thermoelectric properties.
Project description:Single-walled carbon nanotubes (SWCNTs) are a group of widely used carbon-based nanomaterials (CNMs) with various applications, which raise increasing public concerns associated with their potential toxicological effect and risks on human and ecosystems. In this report, we comprehensively evaluated the nanotoxicity of SWCNTs with their relationship to varying lengths, functional groups and electronic structures, by employing both newly established quantitative toxicogenomics test, as well as conventional phenotypic bioassays. The objective is to reveal potential cellular toxicity and mechanisms of SWCNTs at the molecular level, and to probe their potential relationships with their morphological, surface, and electronic properties. The results indicated that DNA damage and oxidative stress were the dominant mechanisms of action for all SWCNTs and, the toxicity level and characteristics varied with length, surface functionalization and electronic structure. Distinguishable molecular toxicity fingerprints were revealed for the two SWCNTs with varying length, with short SWCNT exhibiting higher toxicity level than the long one. In terms of surface properties, SWCNT functionalization, namely carboxylation and hydroxylation, led to elevated overall toxicity, especially genotoxicity, as compared to unmodified SWCNT. Carboxylated SWCNT induced a greater toxicity than the hydroxylated SWCNT. The nucleus is likely the primary target site for long, short, and carboxylated SWCNTs and mechanical perturbation is likely responsible for the DNA damage, specifically related to degradation of the DNA double helix structure. Finally, dramatically different electronic structure-dependent toxicity was observed with metallic SWCNT exerting much higher toxicity than the semiconducting one that exhibited minimal toxicity among all SWCNTs.
Project description:Single-walled carbon nanotubes (SWCNTs) hold vast potential for future electronic devices due to their outstanding properties, however covalent functionalization often destroys the intrinsic properties of SWCNTs, thus limiting their full potential. Here, we demonstrate the fabrication of a functionalized graphene/semiconducting SWCNT (T@fG) heterostructured thin film transistor as a chemical sensor. In this structural configuration, graphene acts as an atom-thick, impermeable layer that can be covalently functionalized via facile diazonium chemistry to afford a high density of surface functional groups while protecting the underlying SWCNT network from chemical modification, even during a covalent chemical reaction. As a result, the highly functionalized carbon-based hybrid structure exhibits excellent transistor properties with a carrier mobility and ON/OFF ratio as high as 64 cm2/Vs and 5400, respectively. To demonstrate its use in potential applications, T@fG thin films were fabricated as aqueous ammonium sensors exhibiting a detection limit of 0.25 ?M in a millimolar ionic strength solution, which is comparable with state-of-the-art aqueous ammonium nanosensors.