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Chinese Scientists Create Ultra Light, Low-Cost Carbon Nanotube Aerogels from Bacteria

Posted By Lidija Grozdanic On February 27, 2013 @ 11:45 am In green technology,News,Sustainable Materials | No Comments

carbon nanotube aerogels, aerogels, nanotechnology, ultralight materials, lightweight materials, fire-proof materials, green technology, chinese researchers, elastic carbon aerogels, biomass, aerogel oil-spill cleanup, aerogel lithium-ion batteries [1]

Scientists at the Univeristy of Science and Technology of China have developed an environmentally friendly method of creating carbon nanotube aerogels [2]. The ultra light, fire-resistant material is made from bacterial cellulose, and it could have a wide variety of applications in fields such as nanotechnology [3], electronics, optics, material science and architecture.


carbon nanotube aerogels, aerogels, nanotechnology, ultralight materials, lightweight materials, fire-proof materials, green technology, chinese researchers, elastic carbon aerogels, biomass, aerogel oil-spill cleanup, aerogel lithium-ion batteries [4]

Researchers at the Hefei National Laboratory for Physical Sciences at Micrscale (HFNL), Univeristy of Science and Technology of China used a low-cost biomass, bacterial cellulose [5], which can be produced industrially in a microbial fermentation process, to fabricate the aerogels. The resulting material, composed of interconnected three-dimensional networks of cellulose nanofibers [6], exhibits remarkable electrical properties, extraordinary strength and efficiency in heat conduction.

Small pieces of cellulose nanofibers were trimmed, freeze-dried and then pyrolyzed at 1300 degrees Celsius under argon to convert the cellulose into graphitic carbon. The result was ultralight nanofibrous carbon aerogel with outstanding compressibility, which is impossible in case of common aerogels due to their fragility. The high surface reactivity of the carbon nanofibers in aerogel form, extremely high porosity and excellent mechanical properties predispose this material to use in many industries such as easy dyes removal or selective adsorbents for oil-spill cleanup [7] or for 3D composite, conductive gels, catalysts support, electrodes for lithium-ion batteries [8] or supercapacitors.

Via Phys.org [9]


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URL to article: http://inhabitat.com/chinese-scientists-create-ultralight-fire-resistant-carbon-nanotube-aerogels-from-low-cost-biomass/

URLs in this post:

[1] Image: http://inhabitat.com/wp-content/blogs.dir/1/files/2013/02/800px-Aerogel_hand.jpg

[2] aerogels: http://inhabitat.com/exciting-advances-in-insulation-with-aerogel/

[3] nanotechnology: http://inhabitat.com/nanotech-robots-travel-through-blood-to-turn-off-tumor-cells/

[4] Image: http://inhabitat.com/wp-content/blogs.dir/1/files/2013/02/467px-Aerogelflower_filtered.jpg

[5] bacterial cellulose: http://inhabitat.com/designer-suzanne-lee-grows-a-wardrobe-from-bacteria/

[6] nanofibers: http://inhabitat.com/next-generation-nanofiber-bulbs-on-the-horizon/solid_state_lighting_hr/

[7] oil-spill cleanup: http://inhabitat.com/super-insulator-aergel-could-be-used-to-soak-up-oil/

[8] lithium-ion batteries: http://inhabitat.com/tag/lithium-ion

[9] Phys.org: http://phys.org/news/2013-02-airy-thirsty-ultralight-flexible-fire-resistant.html

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