Photoconductive hybrid films via directional self-assembly of C 60 on aligned carbon nanotubes

Eric R. Meshot, Keval D. Patel, Sameh Tawfick, K. Anne Juggernauth, Mostafa Bedewy, Eric A. Verploegen, Michaël F.L. De Volder, A. John Hart

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Hybrid nanostructured materials can exhibit different properties than their constituent components, and can enable decoupled engineering of energy conversion and transport functions. Novel means of building hybrid assemblies of crystalline C 60 and carbon nanotubes (CNTs) are presented, wherein aligned CNT films direct the crystallization and orientation of C 60 rods from solution. In these hybrid films, the C 60 rods are oriented parallel to the direction of the CNTs throughout the thickness of the film. High-resolution imaging shows that the crystals incorporate CNTs during growth, yet grazing-incidence X-ray diffraction (GIXD) shows that the crystal structure of the C 60 rods is not perturbed by the CNTs. Growth kinetics of the C 60 rods are enhanced 8-fold on CNTs compared to bare Si, emphasizing the importance of the aligned, porous morphology of the CNT films as well as the selective surface interactions between C 60 and CNTs. Finally, it is shown how hybrid C 60-CNT films can be integrated electrically and employed as UV detectors with a high photoconductive gain and a responsivity of 10 5 A W -1 at low biases (± 0.5 V). The finding that CNTs can induce rapid, directional crystallization of molecules from solution may have broader implications to the science and applications of crystal growth, such as for inorganic nanocrystals, proteins, and synthetic polymers.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)577-584
Number of pages8
JournalAdvanced Functional Materials
Issue number3
StatePublished - Feb 8 2012
Externally publishedYes


  • carbon nanotubes
  • fullerenes
  • hybrid materials
  • photoconductivity
  • self-assembly

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Chemistry(all)
  • Materials Science(all)
  • Condensed Matter Physics


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