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Kinetic Modeling of the SWNT Growth by CO Disproportionation on CoMo Catalysts

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Abstract:

A kinetic model has been developed to describe the growth of single-walled carbon nanotubes (SWNT) in the CoMoCAT method, which is based on the disproportionation of CO on supported CoMo catalysts. The model attempts to capture mathematically the different stages involved in this method: (i) catalyst activation or in-situ creation of active sites, i.e., reduced Co clusters by transformation of CoMoOx precursor species, or oxidized sites; (ii) CO decomposition over active sites, which increases the surface fugacity of carbon until reaching a certain threshold; (iii) nucleation of ordered forms of carbon; (iv) C diffusion (both across the surface and into the metal particle); (v) SWNT growth; (vi) termination, by either deactivation of the catalyst active sites or by increase in the carbon concentration at the metal/SWNT interface, approaching that of the metal/gas interface and eliminating the driving force for diffusion. Previous investigations have only explained the growth termination by the former. Here, we emphasize the possible contribution of the later and propose a novel "hindrance factor" to quantify the effect of nanotube interaction with its surroundings on the growth termination. To test the kinetic model and obtain typical values of the physical parameters, experiments have been conducted on a CoMo/SiO2 catalyst in a laboratory flow reactor, in which the rate of carbon deposition was continuously evaluated by the direct measurement of the CO2 evolution as a function of time. The experimental data are fitted very well with model.

Keywords: CO-MO CATALYSTS; COMOCAT PROCESS; KINETIC MODELING; SWNT GROWTH

Document Type: Research Article

DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1166/jnn.2008.SW21

Publication date: November 1, 2008

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  • Journal for Nanoscience and Nanotechnology (JNN) is an international and multidisciplinary peer-reviewed journal with a wide-ranging coverage, consolidating research activities in all areas of nanoscience and nanotechnology into a single and unique reference source. JNN is the first cross-disciplinary journal to publish original full research articles, rapid communications of important new scientific and technological findings, timely state-of-the-art reviews with author's photo and short biography, and current research news encompassing the fundamental and applied research in all disciplines of science, engineering and medicine.
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