We report the generation of fullerenes and nanotubes using an arc discharge on graphite in a high-pressure nozzle. The vapour from the arc is quenched via collisions with helium gas, forming carbon clusters within a localized high-pressure region. The carbon molecules are entrained in the gas jet as it expands into the vacuum and deposited onto a silicon substrate in a low-pressure (6mT) environment. Mass spectroscopy measurements of the plasma reveal the presence of C2nmolecules in the expanding plume. Microstructural examination of films deposited using this method revealed clustered regions of larger fullerenes and nanotubes surrounded by an amorphous matrix. Films containing fullerenes and nanotubes were found to be significantly harder and more elastic than amorphous carbon films deposited under identical parameters but without conditions for fullerene and/or nanotube formation.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Condensed Matter Physics