Have you ever heard of Carbon nanotubes? Probably not, but Carbon nanotubes are an exciting innovation that could change the way we do things in many industries. They could be particularly disrupted in the electronic and biotechnology fields, but what are Carbon nanotubes?
Carbon nanotubes as the name would suggest are incredibly small tubes of carbon that range from nanometers to micrometres in size and despite them being so small they possess amazing properties.
Carbon nanotubes are rolled-up sheets of carbon atoms in a hollow cylindrical structure. This structure is arranged in a way which allows them to be strong and conduct electricity. While being tiny in size, this structure gives the nanotubes their strength and depending on the number of layers in the structure they can either be single or multiwalled carbon nanotubes.
Single-walled carbon nanotubes
Single-walled carbon nanotubes as the name suggested are made up of a single layer of atoms in a hexagonal pattern. The hexagonal pattern makes the tubes extremely strong compared to their tiny size. This strength and small size make carbon nanotubes an excellent choice for many high-performance materials including composites, coatings, adhesives and electronic devices. Single-walled carbon nanotubes are often used in electronic devices such as transistors, sensors and displays.
Single-walled carbon nanotubes are composed of layered graphene sheets. The most common method of producing graphene nanotubes is through chemical vapor deposition, wherein graphite is heated at a high temperature in the presence of a catalyst and a carbon-based gas. The atoms of carbon are released from the gas and bind to the catalyst, forming tubes of graphene that originate from the graphite layer. For this process to be successful, it is essential to use high-quality and Custom Graphite Products in order to obtain nanotubes with the desired characteristics.
Multi-walled carbon nanotubes
Multi-walled carbon nanotubes as the name suggests are made out of multiple layers of carbon atoms. These tubes have slightly lower strength and stiffness than single-walled carbon nanotubes, but they are still highly durable and possess excellent electrical conductivity. Multiwalled carbon nanotubes are often used in similar applications to SWCNTs.
Both single-walled and multi-walled carbon nanotubes have an exceptional weight-to-strength ratio. These tubes are lightweight but are much stronger than steel. When SWCNTs and MWCNTs are added to a material they can significantly improve the strength of that material. This makes them ideal for use in high-performance materials, where strength and weight are critical factors. Due to such properties, carbon nanotubes are becoming increasingly common in the aerospace industry to produce lightweight yet incredibly strong materials for aircraft and spacecraft. These nanotubes are generally joined with an aerospace fastener, which provides a secure and reliable connection between the nanotubes and other materials. This ensures that the material can withstand the high pressures and temperatures experienced in aerospace applications.
Benefits of Carbon nanotubes
Carbon nanotubes are known for their high electrical conductivity, because of this they can be more efficient than other materials making them a good choice of material for electronic devices, sensors and primers.
In addition to their strength and electrical conductivity, carbon nanotubes have unique optical properties that make them useful in displays and other optical devices.
Carbon nanotubes can also be used in medical applications as they can be used to producde sensitive biosensors, which can detect minute changes in substances such as glucose or proteins. They can also be used to deliver medicine directly into cells in the body which results in lower side effects and better medical outcomes.
Many fields can benefit from the use of carbon nanotubes including:
- Oil & Gas
In conclusion, carbon nanotubes are an incredibly exciting and rapidly developing technology that has the potential to revolutionize a variety of industries.
Carbon nanotubes whether single or multiwalled are strong, stiff, conductive and can be used to improve the properties of other materials when added to them while reducing your carbon footprint and providing extended durability. Graphene nanotubes allow the creation of new materials and the improvement of old materials to meet the required properties.
Graphene nanotubes are one of the strongest materials in the world, they can be flexible or stiff depending on whether single or multi-walled nanotubes are used and can make materials safer for storage and transport.