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The Carbon Nanocosmos: Novel Materials for the Twenty-First Century

Mauricio Terrones and Humberto Terrones
Philosophical Transactions: Mathematical, Physical and Engineering Sciences
Vol. 361, No. 1813, Mathematics, Physics and Engineering (Dec. 15, 2003), pp. 2789-2806
Published by: Royal Society
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/3559274
Page Count: 18
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The Carbon Nanocosmos: Novel Materials for the Twenty-First Century
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Abstract

Carbon is one of the elements most abundant in nature. It is essential for living organisms and, as an element, occurs in several morphologies. Nowadays, carbon is encountered widely in our daily lives in its various forms and compounds, such as graphite, diamond, hydrocarbons, fibres, soot, oil, complex molecules, etc. However, in the last decade, carbon science and technology have enlarged its scope following the discovery of fullerenes (carbon nanocages) and the identification of carbon nanotubes (rolled graphene sheets). These novel nanostructures possess physico-chemical properties different from those of bulk graphite and diamond. It is expected that numerous technological applications will arise using such fascinating structures. This account summarizes the most relevant achievements regarding the production, properties and applications of nanoscale carbon structures and, in particular, of carbon nanotubes. It is believed that nanocarbons will be crucial for the development of emerging technologies in the following years.

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