Starched carbon nanotubes

Alexander Star, David W. Steuerman, James R. Heath, J. Fraser Stoddart*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

552 Scopus citations


Common-or-garden starch can render single-walled carbon nanotubes (SWNTs) readily soluble in water. The secret is to preorganize the linear amylose component in the starch into a helix with iodine prior to bringing the SWNTs on the scene. The SWNTs displace the iodine molecules in a "pea-shooting" type of mechanism (see scheme). After some physical cajoling of the aqueous solution containing the starch - SWNT complex, a fine "bucky paper" is formed. Spitting in the aqueous solution, followed by sitting around for a few hours, also enables equally fine "bucky paper" to be harvested.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)2508-2512
Number of pages5
JournalAngewandte Chemie - International Edition
Issue number14
StatePublished - Jul 15 2002


  • Amylose
  • Hydrophobic interactions
  • Molecular recognition
  • Nanotubes
  • Self-assembly

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Catalysis
  • Chemistry(all)

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