Carbon fibre and carbon nanotubes

Carbon fibre and carbon nanotubes

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Credit: Massimo Brega, THE LIGHTHOUSE/SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY

Caption: Carbon fibre (left), epoxy resin and carbon nanotube pellets (right). Carbon fibre is composed almost entirely of carbon and has four times the strength of an equivalent weight of steel. It is widely used with epoxy resin to reinforce plastics in aircraft, cars and sports equipment. Carbon nanotubes are one atom thick sheets of graphite, called graphene, rolled into cylindrical form with diameter of the order of a nanometre. Nanotubes can be arranged concentrically into multi-walled nanotubes (MWNTs). The MWNT pellets seen here have been manufactured to be added to thermoplastics, to change the electrical and thermal properties and increase mechanical strength of the final material. Photographed at the Arkema Laboratory Pilot in Lacq, France, where MWNTs

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