Super Absorbent Palladium Filled Carbon Nanotubes for the Storage and Detection of Hydrogen Gas

Technology #30222

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Schematic diagram showing the formation of the CNT filled with Pd-nanoparticles in the arc-discharge in solution method
Sudipta Seal, Ph.D.
Debasis Bera, Ph.D.
Suresh Kuiry, Ph.D.
Matthew McCutchin
Meyya Meyyappan
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Andrea Adkins
Assistant Director 407.823.0138
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Synthesis of carbon nanotubes filled with palladium nanoparticles using arc discharge in solution

US Patent 7,438,885 B1

In-situ synthesis of carbon nanotubes filled with metallic nanoparticles using arc discharge in solution

US Patent 7,968,072 B2

A one-step arc-discharge in solution method for the synthesis of carbon nanotubes containing metals, such as palladium

Hydrogen gas is currently utilized for a variety of industrial, commercial and scientific purposes. In the future the world looks to utilizing this gas as a sustainable energy alternative to fossil fuels, but many challenges must be overcome in order to bring hydrogen power into the consumer market. One major challenge lies with the efficient storage and transport of hydrogen gas. An additional problem lies in the fact the hydrogen is colorless and odorless, making detection of this highly flammable chemical difficult.

Technical Details

The present invention hopes to first solve storage issues by providing a super absorbent medium for hydrogen to cling to in the form of palladium coated carbon nanotubes (CNTs). Palladium acts as a hydrogen “super sponge” by absorbing over 900 times its own volume in surrounding hydrogen gas, while the CNTs act as a base for the palladium nanoparticles and are efficient hydrogen absorbents as well. The invention provides a novel inexpensive method for simultaneously forming, filling and decorating CNTs with palladium nanoparticles. Additionally, Palladium doped CNTs could be utilized to create highly keen hydrogen sensors which experience a shift in electrical potential when the hydrogen gas interacts with the nanotube elements.


  • Absorbs over 900 times its volume in hydrogen gas
  • Manufacturing method is scalable, efficient and inexpensive
  • Can incorporate a variety of other metals into carbon nanotubes for several applications
  • Detection of hydrogen gas is highly sensitive


  • Hydrogen gas production and storage
  • Semiconductor manufacturing
  • Chemical
  • Metal ore manufacturing
  • Oil refineries