Continuous and Scalable Production of High Quality Nanofibers and Nanotubes

X. Chen, G. Grocke, Z. Zhou
Argonne National Laboratory,
United States

Keywords: nanofiber, nanotube, scalable, continuous

Summary:

Nanofibers and nanotubes are some of the most important and widely studied nanostructures. Novel phenomena and behavior have been shown to arise from high aspect ratios and low dimensions at the nanoscale, such as the size- and dimension-dependent properties of various nanomaterials that make them excellent components for applications in electronic, optoelectronic, electrochemical, electromechanical, magnetic and thermomagnetic devices. Despite the tremendous potential of such materials in many fields that has been demonstrated in the past few decades (based on various fabrication techniques), there has been a (significant) lack of a suitable strategy to produce high quality 1-D nanostructures such as nanofibers and nanotubes with a wide selection of material compositions in a consistent, scalable and economic way, which are key factors for industrial wide adoption of any emerging technology. This has severely limited the application of such structures in real-life device level to realize their vast full potential. Here we report an newly developed integrated electrospinning – IR heating – pneumatic collection strategy that enables rapid, continuous production of discrete, high quality fibers of controlled morphology. This new technology has enable us in producing useful among of high quality nanofibers/nanotubes in microwave, thermoelectric and filtration applications and we look forward to expand its potential in many other areas.