Electronically Homogeneous Semiconducting Single-Walled Carbon Nanotubes Solid Bundles

Jae-Hee Han1, Ryuichiro Maruyama2, Woo-Jae Kim1, Chang Young Lee1, Jong Hyun Choi1, Daniel A. Heller1, and Michael S. Strano3. (1) Chemical Engineering, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, 77 Massachusetts Avenue, NE47-577, Cambridge, MA 02139, (2) Solid State Ionics Lab., Advanced Material Laboratories, Sony Corporation, Atsugi 2TEC 6F, No.2, 4-16-1 Okata, Atsugi, Kanagawa, Japan, (3) 66-566 Department of Chemical Engineering, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, 77 Massachusetts Avenue, Cambridge, MA 02139

The ability to synthesize and manipulate uniform bundles of electronically pure single walled carbon nanotubes (SWNTs) remains central to the advancement of these systems in nano-electronic applications. The assembly of separated SWNT into bundles (parallel aggregates) that are electronically homogeneous and of controlled size is currently beyond engineering capabilities. With the advances of both density gradient1,2 and dielectrophoresis methods3, we have performed the first synthesis and measurements of electronically homogeneous solid-state bundles of SWNTs.4 Several interesting properties are noted. We find that bundles of semi-conducting SWNT that are free of all metallic impurities emit photoluminescence (PL) in the near infrared. The emission is an important quality control metric, and allows for photophysical characterization of such systems. TEM image reveals a dielectrophoretically synthesized 36 nm bundle of (6,5)-enriched SWNTs bundle attached to the very end of a supporting chemically etched tungsten tip. A vertical conductance measurement characterizes the resistance with length and reveals non-ohmic, step changes in current at constant potential characteristic of ballistic conductance. A scattering length, L, of approximate 4 to 18 nm is calculated from the trace. We also find that such solid bundles show unprecedented significantly bright PL emission as imaged using an InGaAs camera at both 658 and 785 nm laser excitations, confirming a high degree of semiconductor purity. Controls with un-enriched samples show no emission. The G/G0, where G and G0 are conductance and quantum conductance 2e2/h ≈ 1/13 (k W)-1 respectively, ranges from 0.3 to 2.2 for a typical un-enriched SWNT bundle. High purity semi-conducting bundles exhibit significantly low ratios at about 0.002 to 0.004. Some interesting applications involving environmentally-related PL shift from these semiconducting solid bundles is discussed.


1. Arnold, M. S.; Green, A. A.; Hulvat, J. F.; Stupp, S. I.; Hersam M. C. Nature Nanotech. 2006, 1, 60-65.

2. Kim, W. -J.; Usrey M. L.; Strano, M. S. Chem. Mater. 2007, 19, 1571-1576.

3. Lee, C. Y.; Baik, S.; Zhang, J.; Masel, R. I.; Strano, M. S. J. Phys. Chem. B 2006, 110, 11055-11061.

4. Han, J. H.; Maruyama, R.;, Kim, W. -J.; Lee, C. Y.; Choi, J. H.; Heller, D. A.; Strano, M. S. 2008 (submitted).