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Effective Sidewall Functionalization of Multiwalled Carbon Nanotubes with Dichlorocarbene Addition using New Soluble Multi-site Phase Transfer Catalysts

G. Vimala, E. Murugan


The novel soluble multi-site phase transfer catalysts (MPTCs), viz., 2,6-bis (triethylammoniummethylene chloride)-4-methoxytoluene (BTEACM) and 3,3’,5,5’-tetrakis (dimethylaminopyridinium chloride) biphenyl (TDMAPCB) containing two, and four active sites was synthesized, and characterized through Fourier transform infra red spectroscopy (FTIR), proton nuclear magnetic spectroscopy, carbon nuclear magnetic spectroscopy, thermo gravimetric analysis (TGA) and energy dispersive spectroscopy (EDS) analyses. The obtained MPTCs were used as a catalysts for sidewall functionalization of multiwalled carbon nanotubes (MWCNTs) in dichlorocarbene (CCl2) addition, and compared their functionalization yield with commercially available single site PTC and tri-site PTC viz., benzyltriethylammonium chloride (BTEAC) and 2,4,6-tris (triethylammoniummethylene chloride) mesitylene (TTEAMCM). The functionalization of CCl2 on MWCNTs was established by the appearance of increased peak intensity of C-Cl(str) at 700 cm-1 and decreased peak intensity of C-C(str) at 1260 cm-1 in FTIR analysis. The increased ID/IG ratio from pristine MWCNTs (0.3) to MWCNT-CCl2 hybrid (1.58) obtained from Raman studies strongly proved the covalent functionalization of CCl2 on MWCNTs. Furthermore, the change of surface morphology, and increased diameter of MWCNT-CCl2 hybrids obtained from irrespective of MPTCs were confirmed by scanning electron microscopy, high resolution transmission electron microscopy, and atomic force microscopy. Hence, TDMAPCB showed higher reactivity for sidewall functionalization of MWCNTs in CCl2 addition.


Multi-site phase transfer catalysts; Multi-walled carbon nanotubes; Scanning electron microscopy; High resolution transmission electron microscopy; Atomic force microscopy

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