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Nonwovens / Technical Textiles

Nanocomp Technologies Produces Carbon Nanotube Sheet

Nanocomp Technologies Inc., a Concord, N.H.-based developer of innovative performance materials including long carbon nanotubes, has successfully manufactured 3-foot-by-6-foot sheets of carbon nanotube material. According to the company, the sheets are the largest cohesive sheets ever produced of such material.

Nanocomp has developed technology to produce continuously and at a high volume highly pure carbon nanotubes measuring 1 millimeter in length for efficient conduction of heat and electricity. The company now can apply the technology using established scalable industrial processes to produce large sheets measuring up to tens of square feet.

According to the company, the materials offer high strength-to-weight ratio, electrical and thermal conductivity, and flame resistance that is far superior to numerous other high-tech materials. In addition, the longer length compared with other nanotubes, which measure tens of microns long, makes the Nanocomp nanotubes easier to process using existing manufacturing processes and also improves their performance properties.

“Nanocomp Technologies has made the crucial growth step moving from research to production with the implementation of aggressively scaled up operations to allow production of the world’s largest sheets of carbon nanotube [CNT] material,” said Peter Antoinette, president and CEO, Nanocomp. “This process forms the basis for our strategy to produce value-added CNT components from unique nanomaterials,” he continued, adding that major industrial companies have expressed interest in Nanocomp’s developments.

“The goal of our manufacturing scale-up has been to produce ultra-pure material in increasing quantities, with consistency and reliability utilizing a fully automated process that doesn’t require a Ph.D. to operate,” said Mark Banash, the company’s vice president of engineering. “We’re confident that we’re going to be in a position to offer the volume, material formats and quality that players across many industrial markets need. By continually improving the economics and performance characteristics of our products, we think Nanocomp is the first company that’s going to deliver on the promise of carbon nanotube technology.”

March/April 2008