Diffusion-gradient-induced length instabilities in the catalytic growth of carbon nanotubes

A. Gamalski, E. S. Moore, Michael Treacy, R. Sharma, Peter Rez

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

10 Scopus citations


We report in situ transmission electron microscopy observations of length instabilities in the growth of straight-wall carbon nanotubes. The nanotubes are grown at: T<725 °C, P<80 mTorr by chemical vapor decomposition of acetylene on Fe nanoparticles formed in situ prior to tube growth. The growing nanotubes detach episodically from the catalyst particles, which then nucleate a fresh nanotube. Detachment is induced by the shedding of carbon-starved inner walls during diffusion-limited growth.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number233109
JournalApplied Physics Letters
Issue number23
StatePublished - 2009

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Physics and Astronomy (miscellaneous)


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