Full factorial design approach to carbon nanotubes synthesis by CVD method in argon environment

I.A. Mohammed, M.T. Bankole, A.S. Abdulkareem, S.S. Ochigbo, A.S. Afolabi, O.K. Abubakre

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Whereas meeting product quantity and quality are prime intent in process optimization of materials manufacturing, the application of the more reliable full factorial experiment has not been well-explored in optimization studies of Carbon nanotubes (CNTs) synthesis. In this study, statistical full factorial design of experiment was explored in the parametric studies of CNTs synthesis via acetylene-chemical vapour deposition (CVD). Bimetallic (Fe–Co) catalyst supported on CaCO3 was employed for the synthesis of CNTs. The dependence of CNTs yield on the growth time (45/60 min), growth temperature (700/750 °C), acetylene flow rate (150/190 ml/min), and argon flow rate (230/290 ml/min) was investigated in the 24 factorial design of experiment. The growth temperature and acetylene flow rate were found to have the most significant effects on the yield of CNTs, and a maximum yield of 170% was obtained at growth conditions of 60 min, 700 °C, 190 ml/min acetylene flow rate, and 230 ml/min argon flow rate. Since acetylene undergoes polymerization or dissolution during non-catalyzed thermal decomposition, the significant effects of temperature and acetylene flow rate as illustrated by the factorial analysis suggests that the selective ability of the Fe–Co/CaCO3 catalyst towards CNTs growth in the thermal decomposition of acetylene in CVD was mainly thermodynamics-controlled. Characterization of CNTs samples synthesized at different conditions shows that highest-yield conditions do not guarantee best quality properties. © 2017 The Authors
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)17-42
Number of pages26
JournalSouth African Journal of Chemical Engineering
Publication statusPublished - 2017


Cite this

Mohammed, I. A., Bankole, M. T., Abdulkareem, A. S., Ochigbo, S. S., Afolabi, A. S., & Abubakre, O. K. (2017). Full factorial design approach to carbon nanotubes synthesis by CVD method in argon environment. South African Journal of Chemical Engineering, 24, 17-42. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.sajce.2017.06.001