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Proceedings Paper

Self-organization in composites of poly(3-hexylthiophene) and single-walled carbon nanotubes designed for use in photovoltaic applications
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Paper Abstract

A detailed study of poly(alkylthiophene) self-assembly and organization on single-walled carbon nanotubes (SWNTs) is presented. Experimental evidence for self-assembly and organization of regioregular poly(3-hexyl thiophene) (rrP3HT) on single-walled carbon nanotubes was obtained using scanning tunneling microscopy (STM) and transmission electron microscopy (TEM). TEM images of drop-cast rrP3HT/SWNT composites displayed strong evidence that SWNTs were isolated from each other in a polymer matrix and coated with between 1-3 layers rrP3HT. STM measurements of adsorbed monolayers of rrP3HT on SWNT surfaces were compared to rrP3HT monolayer deposition on highly ordered pyrolytic graphite (HOPG) surfaces. The results show that average inter-lamellar distances of adsorbed polymer are greater for rrP3HT monolayers adsorbed onto the curved surfaces of SWNTs than on the flat surfaces of HOPG samples. Analysis of STM images yielded the chiral angles at which the thiophene polymer chains wrap around individual carbon nanotubes (41-48° with respect to nanotube axis) while the interchain spacings of adsorbed macromolecules was 1.68 ± 0.02 nm. Comparisons between the native polymer deposited on graphite and the composite structure confirmed that the presence of carbon nanotubes in rrP3HT produces a material with a high degree of order at the molecular level. This high level of order and close coupling of the two components of the composite are prerequisites for its use as the active layer of an organic photovoltaic.

Paper Details

Date Published: 19 January 2006
PDF: 11 pages
Proc. SPIE 6036, BioMEMS and Nanotechnology II, 603607 (19 January 2006); doi: 10.1117/12.638665
Show Author Affiliations
Eric R. Waclawik, Queensland Univ. of Technology (Australia)
John M. Bell, Centre for Built Environment and Engineering Research, Queensland Univ. of Technology (Australia)
Roland G. S. Goh, Centre for Built Environment and Engineering Research, Queensland Univ. of Technology (Australia)
Anthony Musumeci, Queensland Univ. of Technology (Australia)
Nunzio Motta, Centre for Built Environment and Engineering Research, Queensland Univ. of Technology (Australia)


Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 6036:
BioMEMS and Nanotechnology II
Dan V. Nicolau, Editor(s)

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