POCAONTAS. Polymer / Carbon Nanotubes Active Systems

Marie Curie

Status: finished project
Contract Number:
FP7-PEOPLE-2012-ITN.Project number 316633




POCAONTAS – Polymer / CarbOn NanoTubes Active Systems will develop a technological platform for optoelectronics based on functional composites of highly purified carbon nanotubes and conjugated polymers. These composites are integrated into three prototypical devices using a novel nanostructuring technique of industrial interest. We will thus address crucial bottlenecks that have severely slowed progress in Carbon Nanotube technology: a lack of control on the nanoscale, and a lack of knowledge of microscopic interaction processes.

We will greatly enhance the control and versatility of current chirality sorting protocols, stablished for CNTs, by synthesizing tailored polymers, targeting specific CNT chiralities and interactions. By adapting established density-gradient based and other sorting methods to organic environments, we will produce single-chirality CNTs, wrapped into functional polymers that don't have to be intrinsically chirality selective. The development and implementation of strategies for control over CNT chirality, length, aggregate-size and entanglement is expected to open up numerous opportunities for the exploration of CNT/polymer photophysical phenomena, with promising electrooptical properties for devices. Up to now, investigations of isolated, single chirality CNT-polymer conjugates have been very scarce. To study the potential and the performance of the new samples, we explore three prototype devices, drawing from the extensive experience of our partners with organic photovoltaic devices, nanoscale field effect transistors, and single CNT photoreceptors. We deploy thermochemical nanolithography (TCNL), a novel nanostructuring technique, and further develop it for the on-demand structuring of surfaces with metallic conductors of controllable work function.

A strong micro/spectroscopic section will take advantage of the availability of these new samples and devices. Leading actors in the fields of femtosecond spectroscopy with ultimate temporal resolution, and near-field local fluorescence probing, respectively, collaborate to devise novel techniques that allow for the first time the real-time tracing of short-lived photoexcitations in single nano-objects at the nanometer scale. Relevant device parameters (charge mobilities, photovoltaic yields, rate costants) will be obtained by a variety of steady-state and time-resolved methods directly in operating devices. World renowned expert groups in quantum chemistry will
attain predictive capacity of the selectivity of the polymer/SWNT interactions, on the solid state properties of the polymers and on the transport properties of the compound materials, and thus will guide the efforts of material synthesis and devices formulation.

Our industrial partner, active in organic semiconductor materials for transistor devices, combines expert knowledge in material synthesis, device technology and industrial production. This combined knowledge is invaluable for our fellows, who will develop an attitude that orients their research towards commercialization options. This will be done in individual research projects, in secondments as well as during dedicated network-wide workshops. Our fellows will acquire the skills and knowledge that are needed as a foundation to push SWNT technology towards commercial devices. An extended secondment program exploits the intense collaboration, inherent to our approach, to form interdisciplinary expertise. Science communication and efficient exchange of information is given very high priority, in order to efficiently eliminate interdisciplinary language barriers, and to explain our field to the general public.

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IMDEA - Spain - Madrid Institute for Advanced Studies - IMDEA Nanociencia - Larry Lüer
UW - Germany - Julius-Maximilians-Universität Würzburg - Institut für Physikalische und Theoretische Chemie - Tobias Hertel
LMU - Germany - Ludwig-Maximilians-Universität München - Department Chemie & CeNS - Achim Hartschuh
UPV-EHU - Spain - Basque Country University - Nano-Bio spectroscopy group - Angel Rubio
IIT - Italy - Italian Institute of Technology - Center for Nano Science and Technology @Polimi - Guglielmo Lanzani
CPST - Lithuania Center for Physical Sciences and Technology - Institute of Physics - Leonas Valkunas
ISTL - Portugal - Instituto Superior Tecnico Lisbon - Department of Chemical and Biological Engineering - Jorge Morgado
ICSTM - United Kingdom - Imperial College of Science, Technology and Medicine - Department of Physics - Thomas Anthopoulos
FLEXINK - United Kingdom - FLEXINK - FLEXINK - Iain McCulloch


Investigador principal:Angel Rubio
Juan Maria García Lastra
Duncan Mowbray
Livia Noemi Glanzmann

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