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Mapping of Embedded Functionalized Carbon Nanotubes in Poly(vinyl alcohol)/Nanotube Composite Using Electrostatic Force Microscopy

Ghabboun, Jamal
Husseini, Ghaleb
Faroun, Maryam
Karmi, Abeer
Hawash, Zafer
Hayek, Iman
Sowwan, Mukhles
In the present study, electrostatic force microscopy (EFM) was used as a nondestructive tool for mapping individual functionalized single-wall carbon nanotubes (SWCNTs) incorporated in a poly(vinyl alcohol) (PVA)/CNT composite. The nanocomposite film was prepared using a spin-coating technique. The FT-IR results show esterification between the PVA and the functionalized CNTs. Furthermore, AFM images show that SWCNTs are embedded inside the PVA film. The distribution and orientation of the embedded CNTs were mapped using EFM phase imaging through investigation of the polarizability signal elicited from the CNTs. Results show that polarized SWCNTs are dispersed and oriented in different directions at different depths in the PVA matrix.