Project I Overview: A new rapid, quantitative and contactless method for the electrical characterization of 1D nanomaterials has been developed.
• Designed and built the microfluidic experimental setup and electrodes were fabricated via photolithography.
• Different fabrication techniques have been utilized to synthesize various types of nanowires/nanotubes including chemical vapor deposition and metal-assisted chemical-etching.
• Electric field manipulation and alignment of various 1D nanomaterials (Si, Ag, TiO2, Al2O3 nanowires, single/multi-walled carbon nanotubes, etc.) was achieved and observed via optical microscopy.
• Various material characterization techniques were utilized to validate the developed method including SEM, TEM, 4-point-probe STM
Project II Overview: Developed a new, scalable post-growth method to fabricate vertically aligned carbon-nanotube/polymer composite membranes to be used as highly-breathable chemical threat responsive military fabric.
• For the first time, combination of alternating and direct current electric fields have been successfully demonstrated to align and concentrate carbon-nanotubes (CNTs) in polymer solution.
• VACNT/polymer composite membranes have been fabricated with the densities approaching to the CVD fabrication method.
• A new approach to cure thin polymer membranes (5-8 µm) via laser have been developed and combined with designed microfluidic device to even further increase vertically aligned CNTs in polymer composites.
Project III Overview: Automatic electrical characterization and sorting of 1D nanomaterials has been achieved by implementing the developed electrical characterization method into a microfluidic device.
• I have eliminated the slow and laborious microfabrication steps by using a simple craft-cutter.
• Automation of the sorting process and image recognition of nanowires has been achieved by the developed LabVIEW program.