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Confined linear carbon chains as a route to bulk carbyne

Low dimensional (D) carbon allotropes like graphene and nanotubes (CNTs) are in great interest because of their unique and outstanding properties in the focus of actual science & technology. In contrast much less is known for the last missing allotrope, infinitely long sp1 hybridized atomic strings, i.e. carbyne. This seems very surprising as the pioneering work of acetylenic polyynes of A. Baeyer dates back to 1885. But, because of the strong reactivity of carbyne so far only short polyyne chains below 100 atoms could be confirmed. Our recent breakthrough of a bulk synthesis of confined carbyne inside double-walled (DW) CNTs with a record length of more than 6000 carbon atoms (Nat. Mater. 15, 634, 2016) opens a trail into uncharted territory, which will now allow for the first time unraveling its intrinsic properties. This result has been recognized as record breaking result in chemistry (ACS Centr. Sci., 2, 489, 2016).

Electronic Properties of Materials
Faculty of Physics
University of Vienna

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