Covalent and non-covalent single wall carbon nanotube chemistries
Boul, Peter James
Smalley, Richard E.
Doctor of Philosophy
New methods for covalent functionalization of single wall carbon nanotubes (SWNTs) have been developed through fluorinated nanotube material. Nanotube material that had been reacted with elemental fluorine to render a C 2F stoichiometry has been further functionalized with organolithium and Grignard reagents. The resulting products show distinct solutions properties from both the original pristine nanotube material and the fluorotubes. Routes to solubilization of nanotubes in water have been established through non-covalent interactions with polystyrene sulfonate and polyvinyl pyrollidone. SWNTs which are characterized with absorption, Raman, and fluorescence spectroscopies have been rendered soluble in water in concentrations substantially higher than those achievable with surfactant stabilized tubes. The spectroscopic nature of SWNT material is strongly influenced by non-covalent interactions of the tubes with their local microenvironment. These functionalized or solublized SWNTs can be chemically manipulated as organic macromolecules. In this way, high performance liquid chromatography (HPLC) has been shown to be a useful tool in the separation of nanotubes from one another.