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1.3 PHYSICAL SCIENCES
The interaction of carbon nanotubes with soft organic molecules such as cyclodextrins and other saccarides has recently been shown to produce water soluble composites. Such systems offer considerable advantages over polymer based composites due to their biocompatibility and noncovalent coupling which can potentially preserve the unique properties of the tubes. The mechanism of interaction for such systems has been proposed to be dominated by hydrophobic and hydrophilic interactions along the surface of the tube. However efforts to characterise and rationalise such noncovalent interactions between the sugar-based materials and the carbon nanotubes have been slow to emerge. In this study a composite system has been formed using HiPco Single Walled Carbon Nanotubes (HCNT) and starch (extracted from rice). This composite was characterised using a range of spectroscopic techniques, which showed clear evidence of an intermolecular interaction between the HCNT and starch. The characterisation of these systems will be presented and evidence to support the notion of a noncovalent interaction is clear.
Casey, A., Farrell, G., McNamara, M., Byrne, H., Chambers, G.: Interaction of carbon nanotubes with sugar complexes.Synthetic Metals, vol. 153, Issues 1-3, pp 357-360. 21 September, 2005.