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Catalyst-induced growth of carbon nanotubes on tips of cantilevers and nanowires

United States Patent

June 29, 2004
View the Complete Patent at the US Patent & Trademark Office
Oak Ridge National Laboratory - Visit the Partnerships Directorate Website
A method is described for catalyst-induced growth of carbon nanotubes, nanofibers, and other nanostructures on the tips of nanowires, cantilevers, conductive micro/nanometer structures, wafers and the like. The method can be used for production of carbon nanotube-anchored cantilevers that can significantly improve the performance of scaning probe microscopy (AFM, EFM etc). The invention can also be used in many other processes of micro and/or nanofabrication with carbon nanotubes/fibers. Key elements of this invention include: (1) Proper selection of a metal catalyst and programmable pulsed electrolytic deposition of the desired specific catalyst precisely at the tip of a substrate, (2) Catalyst-induced growth of carbon nanotubes/fibers at the catalyst-deposited tips, (3) Control of carbon nanotube/fiber growth pattern by manipulation of tip shape and growth conditions, and (4) Automation for mass production.
Lee; James Weifu (Oak Ridge, TN), Lowndes; Douglas H. (Knoxville, TN), Merkulov; Vladimir I. (Knoxville, TN), Eres; Gyula (Knoxville, TN), Wei; Yayi (Fishkill, NY), Greenbaum; Elias (Oak Ridge, TN), Lee; Ida (Oak Ridge, TN)
UT-Battelle, LLC (Oak Ridge, TN)
09/ 873,928
June 4, 2001
The United States Government has rights in this invention pursuant to contract no. DE-AC05-00OR22725 between the United States Department of Energy and UT-Battelle, LLC.