Thermally Stable and Electrically Conductive, Vertically Aligned Carbon Nanotube/Silicon Infiltrated Composite Structures for High-Temperature Electrodes

Qi Ming Zou, Lei Min Deng, Da Wei Li, Yun Shen Zhou, Hossein Rabiee Golgir, Kamran Keramatnejad, Li Sha Fan, Lan Jiang, Jean Francois Silvain, Yong Feng Lu

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

14 Scopus citations


Traditional ceramic-based, high-temperature electrode materials (e.g., lanthanum chromate) are severely limited due to their conditional electrical conductivity and poor stability under harsh circumstances. Advanced composite structures based on vertically aligned carbon nanotubes (VACNTs) and high-temperature ceramics are expected to address this grand challenge, in which ceramic serves as a shielding layer protecting the VACNTs from the oxidation and erosive environment, while the VACNTs work as a conductor. However, it is still a great challenge to fabricate VACNT/ceramic composite structures due to the limited diffusion of ceramics inside the VACNT arrays. In this work, we report on the controllable fabrication of infiltrated (and noninfiltrated) VACNT/silicon composite structures via thermal chemical vapor deposition (CVD) [and laser-assisted CVD]. In laser-assisted CVD, low-crystalline silicon (Si) was quickly deposited at the VACNT subsurfaces/surfaces followed by the formation of high-crystalline Si layers, thus resulting in noninfiltrated composite structures. Unlike laser-assisted CVD, thermal CVD activated the precursors inside and outside the VACNTs simultaneously, which realized uniform infiltrated VACNT/Si composite structures. The growth mechanisms for infiltrated and noninfiltrated VACNT/ceramic composites, which we attributed to the different temperature distributions and gas diffusion mechanism in VACNTs, were investigated. More importantly, the as-farbicated composite structures exhibited excellent multifunctional properties, such as excellent antioxidative ability (up to 1100 °C), high thermal stability (up to 1400 °C), good high velocity hot gas erosion resistance, and good electrical conductivity (∼8.95 Sm-1 at 823 K). The work presented here brings a simple, new approach to the fabrication of advanced composite structures for hot electrode applications.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)37340-37349
Number of pages10
JournalACS Applied Materials and Interfaces
Issue number42
StatePublished - Oct 25 2017


  • ceramic composite
  • high-temperature electrode
  • infiltration
  • thermal chemical vapor deposition
  • vertically aligned carbon nanotube

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Materials Science


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