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Title: Stable synthesis of few-layered boron nitride nanotubes by anodic arc discharge

Boron nitride nanotubes (BNNTs) were successfully synthesized by a dc arc discharge using a boron-rich anode as synthesis feedstock in a nitrogen gas environment at near atmospheric pressure. The synthesis was achieved independent of the cathode material suggesting that under such conditions the arc operates in so-called anodic mode with the anode material being consumed by evaporation due to the arc heating. In order to sustain the arc current by thermionic electron emission, the cathode has to be at sufficiently high temperature, which for a typical arc current density of similar to 100 A/cm 2, is above the boron melting point (2350 K). With both electrodes made from the same boron-rich alloy, we found that the arc operation unstable due to frequent sticking between two molten electrodes and formation of molten droplets. We achieved a stable and reliable arc operation and arc synthesis with the boronrich anode and the cathode made from a refractory metal which has a melting temperature above the melting point of boron. Ex-situ characterization of synthesized BNNTs with electron microscopy and Raman spectroscopy revealed that independent of the cathode material, the tubes are primarily single and double walled. Our results also show evidence of root-growth ofmore » BNNTs produced in the arc discharge.« less
ORCiD logo [1] ; ORCiD logo [2] ; ORCiD logo [3] ;  [4]
  1. Princeton Plasma Physics Lab. (PPPL), Princeton, NJ (United States); Princeton Univ., NJ (United States). Princeton Inst. for Science and Technology of Materials
  2. Princeton Plasma Physics Lab. (PPPL), Princeton, NJ (United States)
  3. Princeton Univ., NJ (United States). Dept. of Chemical and Biological Engineering
  4. Princeton Univ., NJ (United States). Princeton Inst. for Science and Technology of Materials
Publication Date:
Accepted Manuscript
Journal Name:
Scientific Reports
Additional Journal Information:
Journal Volume: 7; Journal Issue: 1; Journal ID: ISSN 2045-2322
Nature Publishing Group
Research Org:
Princeton Plasma Physics Lab. (PPPL), Princeton, NJ (United States)
Sponsoring Org:
USDOE Office of Science (SC), Basic Energy Sciences (BES) (SC-22)
Country of Publication:
United States
37 INORGANIC, ORGANIC, PHYSICAL, AND ANALYTICAL CHEMISTRY; chemistry; synthesis and processing
OSTI Identifier: