Research Highlight

Nanotube architecture reshaped

Biplab Das

doi:10.1038/nindia.2008.332 Published online 5 December 2008

Researchers have devised a method to reshape the surface of multi-walled carbon nanotubes. Using microwave-induced plasma, the researchers delivered nitrogen containing groups onto the side walls of MWCNTs1. Such surface-modified MWCNTs have potential applications in device fabrication.

For the study, the researchers placed MWCNTs under nitrogen and argon microwave-induced plasma in order to modify their side walls with functional groups like amine, nitride and amide groups.

Sophisticated imaging technique showed that the surface of MWCNTs was modified due to presence of the functional groups. Then for device fabrication, they developed MWCNTs film, which was spread over silicon wafer and an organic compound. The devices produced with such functionalised MWCNTs exhibited short circuit current density, open circuit voltage and power conversion efficiency.

In the composite film, functionalised MWCNTs facilitate photo-induced charge separation. A combination of these impressive properties of modified MWCNTs will enable a whole new variety of useful and beneficial applications in near future.

The authors of this work are from: Nanotechnology Research Center, Birla College, Kalyan, India; Department of Environmental Technology and Urban Planning, Nagoya Institute of Technology, Nagoya, Japan; Department of Electrical and Electronics Engineering, Chubu University, Matsumoto-cho, Kasugai-shi, Japan.


  1. Kalita, G. et al. Functionalization of multi-walled carbon nanotubes (MWCNTs) with nitrogen plasma for photovoltaic device application. Curr. Appl. Phys. 9, 346-351 (2009) | Article |