A research team headed by Dr. Takeshi Saito from the Research Center for Advanced Carbon Materials (Sumio Iijima, Director) of the National Institute for Advanced Industrial Science and Technology (AIST; Hiroyuki Yoshikawa, President) has developed a novel synthesis method for SWNTs (single-walled carbon nanotubes) to be the core material for nanotechnologies. This method modified from the DIPS (direct injection pyrolytic synthesis) method has dramatically improved an accurate control of the reaction conditions to achieve high purity and a high degree of graphitization. The purity of the nanotubes increased from 50% to 97.5%, and the structural defects in the nanotubes was reduced to one tenth of the previous level. As there is no need for purification processes, surface treatments or use of binder, these high quality SWNTs can be used directly as high strength threads (SWNT wire) or as SWNT mesh sheets for cell culture.
The results of the present research were presented at the "Advanced Nanocarbon Application Project Symposium" organized by the New Energy and Industrial Technology Development Organization (NEDO) on May 12, 2006 under the title "Research on Catalysis and Processes of Single-Walled Carbon Nanotubes"