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Isotope fractionation in the synthesis of fullerenes

Lookup NU author(s): Emeritus Professor Mark ThomasORCiD


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The synthesis of fullerenes by the direct current (DC) carbon arc evaporation method produces a number of different carbon materials. This investigation has involved the structural characterisation of the materials and the study of their isotopic composition. The cathode deposit was a highly ordered graphite with the basal planes oriented in the axial direction of the graphite rod. Raman microprobe spectroscopy, X-ray powder diffraction, and temperature programmed combustion measurements also showed that the material was heterogeneous. The structural characterisation results were consistent with the deposit being formed at progressively lower heat-treatment temperatures with increasing deposition. The fullerene soot was a very heterogeneous material with a large surface area. Isotope composition studies showed that the raw fullerene soot, fullerene depleted soot (toluene extract), C60, and C70 were enriched in C-13 relative to the graphite anode, whereas the cathode deposit was depleted in C-13. The measurements show that C60 is richer in C-13 compared with both C70 and the toluene-extracted soot. The implications regarding the mechanisms for the formation of fullerenes are discussed.

Publication metadata

Author(s): Thomas KM, Lewis JM, Bottrell SH, Dean SP, Foulkes J

Publication type: Article

Publication status: Published

Journal: Carbon

Year: 1994

Volume: 32

Issue: 5

Pages: 991-1000

Print publication date: 01/01/1994

ISSN (print): 0008-6223

ISSN (electronic): 1873-3891

Publisher: Pergamon


DOI: 10.1016/0008-6223(94)90059-0


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