Mostafa Bedewy Wins $330K NSF Grant to Study “Nanotube Forests”

Mostafa Bedewy has been awarded a new research grant from the National Science Foundation (NSF) for $330,000 as a single principal investigator (PI).  The award, titled “Functionally Graded Carbon Nanotubes by Dynamic Control of Morphology during Chemical Vapor Deposition”, will fund research in the NanoProduct Lab (Bedewy Research Group) for three years focusing on studying and controlling the catalytic activation and deactivation during the chemical synthesis of vertically aligned nanotubes.

Manufacturers use carbon nanotubes in a variety of commercial products from baseball bats and bicycle frames to aerospace structures. Attributes such as a tensile strength 20 times higher than steel and an electrical conductivity 10 times that of copper have caused the global carbon nanotube market to soar to $3.43 billion in 2016, and it is projected to double by 2022.

Bedewy will employ a combination of experimental and modeling techniques to reveal the kinetics of activation and deactivation in large populations of carbon nanotubes known as “nanotube forests.”

Emerging applications such as thermal interfaces for high power density devices, electrical interconnects for 3D electronics, and structural materials for mechanical energy absorption require greater control of the nanotube forest structures, and therefore, a better understanding is needed for how the forest morphology develops during the production process, i.e. during their collective growth by CVD.

Written by Matt Cichowicz.

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