Comparing field emission stability of lithography-free, modified multi-walled carbon nanotubes

Document Type


Publication Date



Department of Physics


Field emission from carbon nanotubes (CNTs) has been known for more than a decade but there is no commercialized product available in the market. Apparently, we need to improve our basics understanding on stable field emission from CNTs. Here we compared the field emission properties of as grown vertically-aligned multi-walled carbon nanotubes (MWCNTs) to two types of modified MWCNTs: 1) Conical bundles of opened-tip MWCNTs, and 2) Opened-tip MWCNTs embedded in poly-methyl methacrylate (PMMA). We found that both types of modified MWCNTs have lower emission thresholds and better emission stability than the as grown samples. Among these modified samples, MCNTs embedded in PMMA has lower emission thresholds and better emission stability. We attributed these improvements to the filling of spacing between MWCNTs with PMMA that has higher dielectric constant than vacuum.

Publisher's Statement

© Materials Research Society 2010. Publisher's version of record:

Publication Title

MRS Proceedings Online