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Polymers 2011, 3(3), 1433-1446; doi:10.3390/polym3031433
Article

Microscopic and Spectroscopic Investigation of Poly(3-hexylthiophene) Interaction with Carbon Nanotubes

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1 Faculty of Built Environment and Engineering, Queensland University of Technology, 2 George St., Brisbane, QLD 4001, Australia 2 Faculty of Science and Technology, Queensland University of Technology, 2 George St., Brisbane, QLD 4001, Australia 3 Dipartimento di Fisica, Unità CNISM, Università di Roma “Tor Vergata”, Via della Ricerca Scientifica 1 00133 Roma, Italy
* Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 7 June 2011 / Revised: 13 July 2011 / Accepted: 24 August 2011 / Published: 29 August 2011
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Carbon Nanotubes: Synthesis, Characterization and Applications)
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Abstract

The inclusion of carbon nanotubes in polymer matrix has been proposed to enhance the polymer’s physical and electrical properties. In this study, microscopic and spectroscopic techniques are used to investigate the interaction between poly(3-hexylthiophene) (P3HT) and nanotubes and the reciprocal modification of physical properties. The presence of P3HT-covered nanotubes dispersed in the polymer matrix has been observed by atomic force microscopy and transmission electron microscopy. Then, the modification of P3HT optical properties due to nanotube inclusion has been evidenced with spectroscopic techniques like absorption and Raman spectroscopy. The study is completed with detailed nanoscale analysis by scanning probe techniques. The ordered self assembly of polymer adhering on the nanotube is unveiled by showing an example of helical wrapping of P3HT. Scanning tunneling spectroscopy study provides information on the electronic structure of nanotube-polymer assembly, revealing the charge transfer from P3HT to the nanotube.
Keywords: poly(3-hexylthiophene); carbon nanotubes; STM; AFM poly(3-hexylthiophene); carbon nanotubes; STM; AFM
This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.

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Giulianini, M.; Waclawik, E.R.; Bell, J.M.; Scarselli, M.; Castrucci, P.; De Crescenzi, M.; Motta, N. Microscopic and Spectroscopic Investigation of Poly(3-hexylthiophene) Interaction with Carbon Nanotubes. Polymers 2011, 3, 1433-1446.

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