J. Semicond. > Volume 33 > Issue 5 > Article Number: 053004

Improved field emission properties of carbon nanotube cathodes by nickel electroplating and corrosion

Xiao Xiaojing , Ye Yun , Zheng Longwu and Guo Tailiang

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Abstract: Carbon nanotube (CNT) cathodes prepared by electrophoretic deposition were treated by a combination of nickel electroplating and cathode corrosion technologies. The characteristics of the samples were measured by scanning electron microscopy, energy dispersive X-ray spectroscopy, J-E and F-N plots. After the treatment, the CNT cathodes showed improved field emission properties such as turn-on field, threshold electric field, current density, stability and luminescence uniformity. Concretely, the turn-on field decreased from 0.95 to 0.45 V/μm at an emission current density of 1 mA/cm2, and the threshold electric field decreased from 0.99 to 0.46 V/μm at a current density of 3 mA/cm2. The maximum current density was up to 7 mA/cm2 at a field of 0.48 V/μm. In addition, the current density of the CNT cathodes fluctuated at around 0.7 mA/cm2 for 20 h, with an initial current density 0.75 mA/cm2. The improvement in field emission properties was found to be due to the exposure of more CNT tips, the wider gaps among the CNTs and the infiltration of nickel particles.

Key words: carbon nanotubecathode corrosionNi electroplatingfield emission

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Xiao X J, Ye Y, Zheng L W, Guo T L. Improved field emission properties of carbon nanotube cathodes by nickel electroplating and corrosion[J]. J. Semicond., 2012, 33(5): 053004. doi: 10.1088/1674-4926/33/5/053004.

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Manuscript received: 20 August 2015 Manuscript revised: 28 November 2011 Online: Published: 01 May 2012

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