In this paper we report the effect of Al interlayers on the growth characteristics of carbon nanotubes (CNTs) using as-deposited and plasma etched Fe-Si catalyst films as the catalysts. Al interlayers having various thicknesses ranging from 2 to 42 nm were deposited on Si substrates prior to the deposition of Fe-Si catalysts. It was found that the Al interlayer diffuses into the Fe-Si catalyst during the plasma etching prior to the CNT growth, leading to the swelling and amorphization of the catalyst. This allows enhanced carbon diffusion in the catalyst and therefore a faster growth rate of the resulting CNTs. It was also found that use of an Al interlayer having a thickness of ∼3 ± 1 nm is most effective. Due to the effectiveness of this, the normally required catalyst etching is no longer needed for the growth of CNTs.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Materials Science(all)
- Mechanics of Materials
- Mechanical Engineering
- Electrical and Electronic Engineering