Sunday, April 17, 2016

Tesla coil causes carbon nanotubes to self-assemble into long wire

This is a cool must watch video on self assembly of carbon nano tubes into long wires from researchers at Rice University. HOUSTON – (April 14, 2016) – Scientists at Rice University have discovered that the strong force field emitted by a Tesla coil causes carbon nanotubes to self-assemble into long wires, a phenomenon they call “Teslaphoresis.”

 The team led by Rice chemist Paul Cherukuri reported its results this week in ACS Nano. - See more at:

Teslaphoresis of Carbon Nanotubes

Lindsey R. Bornhoeft, Aida C. Castillo, Preston R. Smalley, Carter Kittrell, Dustin K. James, Bruce E. Brinson, Thomas R. Rybolt, Bruce R. Johnson, Tonya K. Cherukuri, and Paul Cherukuri
ACS Nano, Article ASAP
This paper introduces Teslaphoresis, the directed motion and self-assembly of matter by a Tesla coil, and studies this electrokinetic phenomenon using single-walled carbon nanotubes (CNTs). Conventional directed self-assembly of matter using electric fields has been restricted to small scale structures, but with Teslaphoresis, we exceed this limitation by using the Tesla coil’s antenna to create a gradient high-voltage force field that projects into free space. CNTs placed within the Teslaphoretic (TEP) field polarize and self-assemble into wires that span from the nanoscale to the macroscale, the longest thus far being 15 cm. We show that the TEP field not only directs the self-assembly of long nanotube wires at remote distances (>30 cm) but can also wirelessly power nanotube-based LED circuits. Furthermore, individualized CNTs self-organize to form long parallel arrays with high fidelity alignment to the TEP field. Thus, Teslaphoresis is effective for directed self-assembly from the bottom-up to the macroscale.