Institute of Metal Research, CAS
Making use the hollow core of carbon nanotubes
Shenyang National Laboratory for Materials Science
Institute of Metal Research, Chinese Academy of Sciences
72 Wenhua Road, Shenyang110016, China
Carbon nanotubes (CNTs) are representative one-dimensional material with unique tubular structure. A unique structural characteristic of CNTs is their inner hollow core. Based on the nanoscale hollow inner space, robust tube walls, and good electrical and thermal conductivities of CNTs, some intriguing functions are investigated and explored under TEM. For example, a CNT with open ends and catalyst nanoparticles loaded is used as a nanofurnace operated by Joule heating under TEM, and the nucleation and growth of new CNTs are studied in situ. [1-2] Secondly, CNTs are used as a nanocontainer of active lithium storage materials. Due to the excellent mechanical property of CNTs, the volume change of the active materials are restrained, and desirable cycling and high-rate performance of the hybrid electrode materials are achieved. [3-4] Thirdly, because of the excellent thermal conductivity and chemical stability of CNTs, the amorphization and directional crystallization of iron confined in CNTs are observed, where the CNT serve as a nanocrucible. 
1. B. L. Liu, et al., J. Am. Chem. Soc. 2011, 133, 197.
2. D. M. Tang, et al., ACS Nano 2014, 8, 292.
3. W. J. Yu, et al., ACS Nano 2015, 9, 5063.
4. W. J. Yu, et al., Adv. Energy Mater., 2016, 6, 1501755.
5. D. M. Tang et al. Nano Letters, 2015, 15, 4922.
Chang LIU is a professor at Institute of Metal Research,ChineseAcademyof Sciences. He got his Ph. D. in Materials Science atInstituteofMetal Researchin 2000. His research interest are mainly controlled growth, property, and application of carbon nanotubes.