Kinetics of PL quenching during single-walled carbon nanotube rebundling and diameter-dependent surfactant interactions

Timothy J. McDonald, Chaiwat Engtrakul, Marcus Jones, Garry Rumbles, Michael J. Heben

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112 Citations (Scopus)


The kinetics of single-walled carbon nanotube rebundling have been investigated by photoluminescence (PL) spectroscopy. The rate of loss of PL intensity was measured for 12 different nanotubes in three common aqueous surfactants (sodium dodecyl sulfate, SDS; sodium dodecylbenzene sulfonate, SDBS;.and sodium cholate, SC) as the surfactant suspensions were diluted to promote nanotube rebundling, quenching of semiconductor nanotube PL, and precipitation. The rate of PL decay was first-order in the concentration of isolated nanotubes, as expected if surfactant desorption is rate-limiting in the rebundling process. Temperature-dependent measurements permitted an Arrhenius analysis from which diameter-dependent activation energies were determined. SDS was found to have very strong diameter dependence for activation energy, with stronger binding to smaller-diameter nanotubes, whereas SDBS displayed a weaker diameter dependence. SC was found to bind strongly to certain nanotubes and weakly to the (10,2) nanotube. The PL emission red shifted with time after dilution as surfactant desorption proceeded. This effect is attributed to an increase in the micropolarity at the nanotube surface.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)25339-25346
Number of pages8
JournalJournal of Physical Chemistry B
Issue number50
Publication statusPublished - Dec 21 2006


ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Physical and Theoretical Chemistry
  • Surfaces, Coatings and Films
  • Materials Chemistry

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