Studying the Internal Structure of Carbon Nanotubes with SAXS

A polymer/multi-walled carbon nanotubes composite was measured by small-angle X-ray scattering. The internal structure of the nanotubes was characterized by calculating the electron density profile of the nanotube’s cross-section.


Carbon nanotubes (CNTs) are allotropes of carbon with a cylindrical nanostructure. Composite materials consisting of CNTs dispersed in a polymer matrix exhibit interesting and at the same time novel properties which make them potentially useful in many fields, such as materials science, electronics, optics and others.

Small-angle X-ray scattering (SAXS) is sensitive to electron density variations within an inhomogeneous (core-shell type) nanomaterial. Therefore, the internal structure of such materials can be determined by measuring the small-angle scattering pattern and calculating the electron-density profile of the material’s cross-section.

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