NOVEL APPLICATIONS OF FUNCTIONALIZED CARBON NANOTUBES AND FULLERENES
Multi-walled carbon nanotubes (MWNTs) with their extraordinary properties are only realized if they are successfully de-bundled and dispersed in common solvents. In this study, a chemical hydrogenation process was developed and optimized to successfully de-bundle MWNTs producing hydrogenated MWNTs (H-MWNTs). Homogeneous dispersion was maintained for H-MWNTs even after 6 months. Amine functionalized MWNTs (NH-MWNTs) were also successfully synthesized and NH-MWNTs with maleic anhydride grafted polyethylene (PE-MAH) polymer composites achieved 33% improvement for tensile strength at 1wt% loading.
Fullerenes were introduced to create polyethyleneimine (PEI)-C60 dendrimer structure. Such structure can be coated onto PE-MAH interdigitated tapes via layer by layer technique to generate strong bonding novel fasteners after curing. The novel fasteners can be potentially functionalized with quaternary ammonia as anti-microbial feature tapes. PEI-C60 dendrimer structures were also successfully deposited onto regular aluminum foils to replace traditional thermal evaporated aluminum as cathode for organic light-emitting diode (OLED) and organic photovoltaics (OPV). OLED and OPV devices were fabricated to show the proof of concept and survey experiment was performed to better understand this novel cathode technique. A true high rate manufacturing process could be applied for this novel technique with aluminum foil.