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dc.contributor.authorPlata, Desiree L.  Concept link
dc.date.accessioned2009-08-31T19:58:31Z
dc.date.available2009-08-31T19:58:31Z
dc.date.issued2009-06
dc.identifier.urihttps://hdl.handle.net/1912/2970
dc.descriptionSubmitted in partial fulfillment of the requirements for the degree of Doctor of Philosophy at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and the Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution June 2009en
dc.description.abstractDriven by commercial promise, the carbon nanotube (CNT) industry is growing rapidly, yet little is known about the potential environmental impacts of these novel materials. In particular, there are no methods to detect CNTs in environmental matrices (e.g., sediment) and thus, there is no way to study their transport or gauge ecological exposure. Thermal methods were developed to quantify CNTs in coastal sediments down to 10 ug per sample, which is sufficient to for CNTs in laboratory air, but not sufficient to measure contemporary levels of CNTs in the environment (which were estimated to be present at pg g-1 sediment levels using a dynamic mass balance model). In addition to the CNTs themselves, potential impacts of CNT production were assessed by monitoring emissions from a representative synthesis. An ethene-fed chemical vapor deposition process generated several compounds of environmental concern, including the greenhouse gas, methane, the hazardous pollutants, benzene and 1,3-butadiene, and toxic polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons. By identifying critical CNT precursors (alkynes), I delivered these compounds without thermal pre-treatment and achieved rapid CNT growth. This approach reduced carbonaceous emissions by more than an order of magnitude, and lowered initial feedstock requirements and energetic demands by at least 20%, without sacrificing CNT yield.en
dc.description.sponsorshipNational Science Foundation (NSF) Graduate Research Fellowship Program, NSF OCE-0221181, the Seaver Institute, the Martin Family Society of Fellows for Sustainability, Arunas and Pam Chesonis through MIT’s Earth System Initiative, and the WHOI Ocean Ventures Fund.
dc.format.mimetypeapplication/pdf
dc.language.isoen_USen
dc.publisherMassachusetts Institute of Technology and Woods Hole Oceanographic Institutionen
dc.relation.ispartofseriesWHOI Thesesen
dc.subjectNanotubesen_US
dc.subjectEnvironmental impact analysisen_US
dc.titleCarbon nanotube synthesis and detection : limiting the environmental impact of novel technologiesen
dc.typeThesisen
dc.identifier.doi10.1575/1912/2970


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