Novel hierarchical chrysanthemum-flower-like carbon nanomaterials (CFL-CNMs) were synthesized by thermal chemical vapor deposition based on acetylene decomposition. A scanning electron microscope and a transmission electron microscope were employed to observe the morphology and structure of the unconventional nanostructures. It is found that the CFL-CNMs look like a blooming chrysanthemum with a stem rather than a spherical flower. The carbon flower has an average diameter of 5 μm, an average stem diameter of 150 nm, branch diameters ranging from 20 to 70 nm, and branch lengths ranging from 0.5 to 3 μm. The morphologies of the CFL-CNMs are unlike any of those previously reported. Fishbone-like carbon nanofibers with a spindle-shaped catalyst locating at the tip can also be found. Furthermore, the catalyst split was proposed to elucidate the formation mechanism of CFL-CNMs. A large and glomerate catalyst particle at the tip of the carbon nanofiber splits into smaller catalyst particles which are catalytic-active points for branch formation, resulting in the formation of CFL-CNMs.
- catalyst split
- chemical vapor deposition
- flower-like carbon nanomaterials