Co-Advisor: Professor Zhenan Bao
B.S. Chemical Engineering, Princeton University, 2008
Carbon nanotubes have been studied extensively because of their exceptional mechanical, thermal, and electrical properties that can be utilized for many applications. Current synthesis methods create a mix of both metallic and semiconducting nanotubes. For most applications, segregation and alignment of these nanotubes is desired. One promising method is to wrap the nanotubes with polymers. However, polymer-nanotube composites are complex and not well understood. This project seeks to understand the relevant interactions using a variety of methods including rheological techniques to find possible applications of these composites. Current focus has been with poly (3-hexyl thiophene)-single-walled carbon nanotube composites. Depending on the solvent, concentration, and temperature, these composites have been shown to have liquid crystalline and gel-like properties. A major part of this project will be optimizing and manipulating these properties to discover new applications.