Characterization of carbon nanotubes and carbon nanotube-epoxy composites


  1. Saville, P.
  2. Noren, B.
  3. Holley, J.
Corporate Authors
Defence Research and Development Canada, Atlantic Research Centre, Halifax NS (CAN)
The mechanical and electrical properties of carbon nanotube composites are attractive for a number of applications. The final properties depend on the quality of the feed stock, the amount of material used, and methods for de-aggregating and dispersing the nanotubes. Here, Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy, RAMAN spectroscopy, scanning electron microscopy, thermogravimetric analysis, and permittivity measurements are used to discern between three commercially available multi-walled carbon nanotubes (Nanocyl 7000, Cheap Tubes, and a sample of acid functionalized multi-walled nanotubes), and their epoxy composites. The RAMAN and thermogravimetric analysis data indicated that the Nanocyl had the most defects and impurities, however, the permittivity measurements and scanning electron microscopy data indicated that the Nanocyl nanotubes were well distributed in the matrix. The most important factors for dispersion and high permittivity appear to be the ability to de-aggregate the nanotubes, which is enabled by the short length, and a small diameter. The small diameter results in an overall longer length of carbon nanotube in the composite compared to an equal mass of larger diameter nanotubes.

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carbon nanotubes;multi-walled nanotubes;permittivity;microwave absorbers;epoxy composite
Report Number
DRDC-RDDC-2015-R006 — Scientific Report
Date of publication
01 Feb 2015
Number of Pages
Electronic Document(PDF)

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