Project TitleEfficient, Low-Cost Method for Isolation of Semiconducting Single-Walled Carbon Nanotubes
Track Code2010-168
Short Description

Simplified method for isolating semiconducting SWNTs using common laboratory equipment and biocompatible surfactants.

#materials #cnt #nanotechnology #fabrication


Semiconducting single-walled carbon nanotubes (SWNT) have been shown to improve the function of a wide variety of devices, ranging from transistors to molecular detectors. To be useful in these applications, the semiconducting SWNTs must be isolated from other species efficiently and to a high degree of purity. Previous methods of achieving such separation involved time-consuming, labor-intensive steps using expensive equipment. Northwestern investigators have developed a simple procedure for isolating these useful SWNTs easily, quickly, and efficiently. The only equipment required for the collection is a Pasteur pipette and a centrifuge, and purities up to 99.5% are achieved. Furthermore, biocompatible surfactants are utilized in place of the conventional ionic substance. The use of these surfactants allows the isolated nanotubes to be used in biological technologies. The new isolation method is fully scalable and will be useful in the efficient and cost-effective isolation of semiconducting SWNTs for a variety of applications.

Posted DateMar 18, 2013 3:31 PM


Alexander L. Antaris
Alexander A. Green
Mark C. Hersam*

Jung-Woo T. Seo


Purification of semiconducting single-walled carbon nanotubes


  • Simple method using only basic equipment
  • Scalable
  • Resulting nanotubes are suitable for biological applications


IP Status

A patent application has been filed.

Contact Information

Arjan Quist, PhD
Invention Manager
(p) 847.467.0305