University of Oulu

Olli Pitkänen, Jarkko Tolvanen, Imre Szenti, Ákos Kukovecz, Jari Hannu, Heli Jantunen, and Krisztian Kordas ACS Applied Materials & Interfaces 2019 11 (21), 19331-19338 DOI: 10.1021/acsami.9b02309

Lightweight hierarchical carbon nanocomposites with highly efficient and tunable electromagnetic interference shielding properties

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Author: Pitkänen, Olli1; Tolvanen, Jarkko1; Szenti, Imre2;
Organizations: 1Microelectronics Research Unit, Faculty of Information Technology and Electrical Engineering, University of Oulu, P.O. Box 4500, FIN-90014 Oulu, Finland
2Interdisciplinary Excellence Centre, Department of Applied and Environmental Chemistry, University of Szeged, H-6720 Szeged, Rerrich Béla tér 1, Hungary
Format: article
Version: published version
Access: open
Online Access: PDF Full Text (PDF, 4.8 MB)
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Language: English
Published: American Chemical Society, 2019
Publish Date: 2020-02-27


High-performance electromagnetic interference shielding is becoming vital for the next generation of telecommunication and sensor devices among which portable and wearable applications require highly flexible and lightweight materials having efficient absorption-dominant shielding. Herein, we report on lightweight carbon foam–carbon nanotube/carbon nanofiber nanocomposites that are synthesized in a two-step robust process including a simple carbonization of open-pore structure melamine foams and subsequent growth of carbon nanotubes/nanofibers by chemical vapor deposition. The microstructure of the nanocomposites resembles a 3-dimensional hierarchical network of carbonaceous skeleton surrounded with a tangled web of bamboo-shaped carbon nanotubes and layered graphitic carbon nanofibers. The microstructure of the porous composite enables absorption-dominant (absorbance ∼0.9) electromagnetic interference shielding with an effectiveness of ∼20—30 dB and with an equivalent mass density normalized shielding effectiveness of ∼800—1700 dB cm3 g–1 at the K-band frequency (18—26.5 GHz). Moreover, the hydrophobic nature of the materials grants water-repellency and stability in humid conditions important for reliable operation in outdoor use, whereas the mechanical flexibility and durability with excellent piezoresistive behavior enable strain-responsive tuning of electrical conductivity and electromagnetic interference shielding, adding on further functionalities. The demonstrated nanocomposites are versatile and will contribute to the development of reliable devices not only in telecommunication but also in wearable electronics, aerospace engineering, and robotics among others.

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Series: ACS applied materials & interfaces
ISSN: 1944-8244
ISSN-E: 1944-8252
ISSN-L: 1944-8244
Volume: 11
Issue: 21
Pages: 19331 - 19338
DOI: 10.1021/acsami.9b02309
Type of Publication: A1 Journal article – refereed
Field of Science: 213 Electronic, automation and communications engineering, electronics
Funding: The research has been partially funded by projects Grelectronics (1569/31/2017, Business Finland) and 6Genesis Flagship (Grant No. 318927, Academy of Finland). I.S. and Á.K. acknowledge the support of The Ministry of Human Capacities, Hungary, Grant 20391-3/2018/FEKUSTRAT. O.P. acknowledges Riitta and Jorma J. Takanen foundation for their support. The support received from the Micro- and Nanotechnology Center, University of Oulu is also acknowledged.
Academy of Finland Grant Number: 318927
Detailed Information: 318927 (Academy of Finland Funding decision)
Copyright information: © 2019 American Chemical Society. This is an open access article published under a Creative Commons Attribution (CC-BY) License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution and reproduction in any medium, provided the author and source are cited.