Evaluation of bimetallic catalysts for the growth of carbon nanotube forests

Hans Tornatzky, David Hardeman, Santiago Esconjauregui*, Lorenzo D'Arsié, Rongsi Xie, Hisashi Sugime, Junwei Yang, Taron Makaryan, Christian Thomsen, John Robertson

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

5 Citations (Scopus)


We systematically study the growth of carbon nanotube forests by chemical vapor deposition using evaporated monometallic or bimetallic Ni, Co, or Fe films supported on alumina. Our results show two regimes of catalytic activity. When the total thickness of catalyst is larger than nominally 1nm, bimetallic catalysts tend to outperform the equivalent layers of a single metal, yielding taller forests of multi-walled carbon nanotubes (CNTs). In contrast, for layers thinner than ~1nm, bimetallic catalysts are notably less active than individually. However, the amount of small diameter and single-walled CNTs is significantly increased. This possible transition at ~1nm might be related to different catalyst composition after annealing, depending whether or not the films overlap during evaporation and alloy during catalyst formation.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)2605-2610
Number of pages6
JournalPhysica Status Solidi (B) Basic Research
Issue number12
Publication statusPublished - 2013 Dec
Externally publishedYes


  • Bimetallic catalysts
  • Carbon nanotube forests
  • Catalytic activity

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Electronic, Optical and Magnetic Materials
  • Condensed Matter Physics


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