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Anisotropic Thermal Diffusivity Characterization of Aligned Carbon Nanotube-Polymer Composites

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The anisotropic thermal diffusivity of aligned carbon nanotube-polymer composites was determined using a photothermoelectric technique. The composites were obtained by infiltrating poly-dimethyl siloxane (PDMS) in aligned multiwall CNT arrays grown by chemical vapor deposition on silicon substrates. The thermal diffusivities are insensitive to temperature in the range of 180 K–300 K. The thermal diffusivity values across the alignment direction are ∼2–4 times smaller than along the alignment direction and larger than effective media theory predictions using reported values for the thermal diffusivity of millimeter thick aligned multiwall carbon nanotube arrays. The effective room temperature thermal conductivity of the composite along the carbon nanotube alignment direction is at least 6X larger than the thermal conductivity of the polymer matrix and is in good agreement with the effective media predictions. This work indicates that infiltration of long and aligned carbon nanotube arrays is currently the most efficient method to obtain high thermal conductivity polymer composites.
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Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: April 1, 2007

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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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