We report on a dip-coating method to prepare catalyst particles (mixture of iron and cobalt) with a controlled diameter distribution on silicon wafer substrates by changing the solution's concentration and withdrawal velocity. The size and distribution of the prepared catalyst particles were analyzed by atomic force microscopy. Carbon nanotubes were grown by chemical vapor deposition on the substrates with the prepared catalyst particles. By decreasing the catalyst particle size to below 10 nm, the growth of carbon nanotubes can be tuned from few-walled carbon nanotubes, with homogeneous diameter, to highly pure single-walled carbon nanotubes. Analysis of the Raman radial breathing modes, using three different Raman excitation wavelengths (488, 633, and 785 nm), showed a relatively broad diameter distribution (0.8-1.4 nm) of single-walled carbon nanotubes with different chiralities. However, by changing the composition of the catalyst particles while maintaining the growth parameters, the chiralities of single-walled carbon nanotubes were reduced to mainly four different types, (12, 1), (12, 0), (8, 5), and (7, 5), accounting for about 70% of all nanotubes.
2012. Vol. 116, no 22, 12232-12239 p.