Structural and Morphological Features of Concentric Iron Oxide/Carbon Nanotubes Obtained from Phospholipids

Marek W. Urban, University of Southern Mississippi

Originally published in Journal of Materials Chemistry, 2010, 20, 5748-5755

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Biologically active 1,2-bis(10,12-tricosadiynoyl)-sn-glycero-3-phosphocholine (DC8,9PC) nanotube-forming phospholipids (PLs) have been utilized as templates to prepare ferromagnetic nanotubes (FMNTs). Combining X-ray diffraction (XRD), selected area electron diffraction (SAD), high-resolution transmission electron microscopy (HRTEM), Raman, and Mössbauer spectroscopy measurements, FMNTs morphological features and chemical composition were determined. These studies showed that FMNTs consist of iron oxide/carbon/iron oxide concentric nanotubes with the amorphous carbon phase sandwiched between two iron oxide layers. The iron oxide phase consists of nanocrystalline magnetite (Fe3O4) which coexist as tetrahedral Fe3+ and octahedral Fe2.5+ sites containing minute quantities of hematite (α-Fe2O3) phase. The carbon phase consists of amorphous carbon forming an amorphous carbon nanotube (ACNT). Magnetic measurements showed that saturation magnetization (Ms) of FMNTs is 79 emu/g, but upon removal of the iron oxide outer and inner layers, ACNTs become paramagnetic. The electrical resistivity (ρ) of single FMNT is 3.3 × 10−2 Ω·m, which decreases to 5.06 × 10−4 Ω·m for ACNT. These magneto-electric properties can be easily tailored, depending upon desired applications and needs.