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Fabrication of multiwalled carbon nanotubes with polymer shells through surface RAFT polymerization

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A core–shell hybrid nanostructure, possessing a hard backbone of multiwalled carbon nanotubes (MWNTs) and a soft shell of brush‐like poly(methyl methacrylate), has been successfully prepared via a reversible addition–fragmentation chain transfer (RAFT) process using a RAFT agent immobilized on MWNTs. Polymer‐modified MWNTs are easily dispersed in good solvents for the grafted polymer, such as toluene, tetrahydrofuran and CHCl3. This observation has been confirmed by transmission electron microscopy analysis. The content of polymer in the functionalized MWNTs can be well controlled by the feed ratio. It is believed that realizing these hybrid structures, on the basis of such simple grafting, will pave the way for the design, fabrication, optimization and eventual application of more functional carbon nanotube‐related nanomaterials. Copyright © 2007 Society of Chemical Industry
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Keywords: RAFT polymerization; multiwalled carbon nanotubes; nanostructures; nuclear magnetic resonance; photoelectron spectroscopy

Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: 01 July 2007

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