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Science. 2013 Jan 11;339(6116):182-6. doi: 10.1126/science.1228061.

Strong, light, multifunctional fibers of carbon nanotubes with ultrahigh conductivity.

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Department of Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering, Applied Physics Program, The Smalley Institute for Nanoscale Science and Technology, Rice University, Houston, TX 77005, USA.


Broader applications of carbon nanotubes to real-world problems have largely gone unfulfilled because of difficult material synthesis and laborious processing. We report high-performance multifunctional carbon nanotube (CNT) fibers that combine the specific strength, stiffness, and thermal conductivity of carbon fibers with the specific electrical conductivity of metals. These fibers consist of bulk-grown CNTs and are produced by high-throughput wet spinning, the same process used to produce high-performance industrial fibers. These scalable CNT fibers are positioned for high-value applications, such as aerospace electronics and field emission, and can evolve into engineered materials with broad long-term impact, from consumer electronics to long-range power transmission.

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