Patents by Inventor Daniel T. Colbert

Daniel T. Colbert has filed for patents to protect the following inventions. This listing includes patent applications that are pending as well as patents that have already been granted by the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO).

  • Patent number: 7390477
    Abstract: This invention relates generally to a fullerene nanotube composition. The fullerene nanotubes may be in the form of a felt, such as a bucky paper. Optionally, the fullerene nanotubes may be derivatized with one or more functional groups. Devices employing the fullerene nanotubes of this invention are also disclosed.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: August 22, 2006
    Date of Patent: June 24, 2008
    Assignee: William Marsh Rice University
    Inventors: Richard E. Smalley, Daniel T. Colbert, Hongjie Dai, Jie Liu, Andrew G. Rinzler, Jason H. Hafner, Ken Smith, Ting Guo, Pavel Nikolaev, Andreas Thess
  • Publication number: 20080107586
    Abstract: This invention relates generally to a method for producing fullerene nanotube catalyst supports and compositions thereof. In one embodiment, fullerene nanotubes or fullerene nanotube structures can be employed as the support material. A transition metal catalyst is added to the fullerene nanotubes. In a preferred embodiment, the catalyst metal cluster is deposited on the open nanotube end by a docking process that insures optimum location for the subsequent growth reaction. The metal atoms may be subjected to reductive conditions.
    Type: Application
    Filed: August 22, 2006
    Publication date: May 8, 2008
    Applicant: William Marsh Rice University
    Inventors: Richard E. Smalley, Daniel T. Colbert, Hongjie Dai, Jie Liu, Andrew G. Rinzler, Jason H. Hafner, Kenneth A. Smith, Ting Guo, Pavel Nikolaev, Andreas Thess
  • Publication number: 20080089830
    Abstract: This invention relates generally to a fullerene nanotube composition. The fullerene nanotubes may be in the form of a felt, such as a bucky paper. Optionally, the fullerene nanotubes may be derivatized with one or more functional groups. Devices employing the fullerene nanotubes of this invention are also disclosed.
    Type: Application
    Filed: August 22, 2006
    Publication date: April 17, 2008
    Applicant: William Marsh Rice University
    Inventors: Richard E. Smalley, Daniel T. Colbert, Hongjie Dai, Jie Liu, Andrew G. Rinzler, Jason H. Hafner, Kenneth A. Smith, Ting Guo, Pavel Nikolaev, Andreas Thess
  • Patent number: 7357906
    Abstract: The invention relates generally to dispersing and fractionating single-wall carbon nanotubes, which can be derivatized to facilitate fractionation, for example, by adding solubilizing moieties to the nanotubes.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: December 22, 2004
    Date of Patent: April 15, 2008
    Assignee: William Marsh Rice University
    Inventors: Daniel T. Colbert, Hongjie Dai, Jason H. Hafner, Andrew G. Rinzler, Richard E. Smalley, Jie Liu, Kenneth A. Smith, Ting Guo, Pavel Nikolaev, Andreas Thess
  • Patent number: 7354563
    Abstract: This invention relates generally to a fullerene nanotube purification process and more particularly to a purification process that comprises heating the fullerene nanotube-containing felt under oxidizing conditions to remove the amorphous carbon deposits and other contaminating materials. In a preferred mode of this purification procedure, the felt is heated in an aqueous solution of an inorganic oxidant, such as nitric acid, a mixture of hydrogen peroxide and sulfuric acid, or a potassium permanganate. Preferably, fullerene nanotube-containing felts are refluxed in an aqueous solution of an oxidizing acid at a concentration high enough to etch away amorphous carbon deposits within a practical time frame, but not so high that the fullerene nanotube material will be etched to a significant degree. When material having a high proportion of fullerene nanotubes is purified, the preparation produced will be enriched in fullerene nanotubes, so that the fullerene nanotubes are substantially free of other material.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: August 22, 2006
    Date of Patent: April 8, 2008
    Assignee: William Marsh Rice University
    Inventors: Richard E. Smalley, Daniel T. Colbert, Hongjie Dai, Jie Liu, Andrew G. Rinzler, Jason H. Hafner, Ken Smith, Ting Guo, Pavel Nikolaev, Andreas Thess
  • Publication number: 20080063588
    Abstract: This invention relates generally to a fullerene nanotube purification process and more particularly to a purification process that comprises heating the fullerene nanotube-containing felt under oxidizing conditions to remove the amorphous carbon deposits and other contaminating materials. In a preferred mode of this purification procedure, the felt is heated in an aqueous solution of an inorganic oxidant, such as nitric acid, a mixture of hydrogen peroxide and sulfuric acid, or a potassium permanganate. Preferably, fullerene nanotube-containing felts are refluxed in an aqueous solution of an oxidizing acid at a concentration high enough to etch away amorphous carbon deposits within a practical time frame, but not so high that the fullerene nanotube material will be etched to a significant degree. When material having a high proportion of fullerene nanotubes is purified, the preparation produced will be enriched in fullerene nanotubes, so that the fullerene nanotubes are substantially free of other material.
    Type: Application
    Filed: August 22, 2006
    Publication date: March 13, 2008
    Applicant: William Marsh Rice University
    Inventors: Richard E. Smalley, Daniel T. Colbert, Hongjie Dai, Jie Liu, Andrew G. Rinzler, Jason H. Hafner, Ken Smith, Ting Guo, Pavel Nikolaev, Andreas Thess
  • Patent number: 7338915
    Abstract: This invention provides a method of making single-wall carbon nanotubes by laser vaporizing a mixture of carbon and one or more Group VIII transition metals. Single-wall carbon nanotubes preferentially form in the vapor and the one or more Group VIII transition metals catalyzed growth of the single-wall carbon nanotubes. In one embodiment of the invention, one or more single-wall carbon nanotubes are fixed in a high temperature zone so that the one or more Group VIII transition metals catalyze further growth of the single-wall carbon nanotube that is maintained in the high temperature zone. In another embodiment, two separate laser pulses are utilized with the second pulse timed to be absorbed by the vapor created by the first pulse.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 27, 2000
    Date of Patent: March 4, 2008
    Assignee: Rice University
    Inventors: Richard E. Smalley, Daniel T. Colbert, Ting Guo, Andrew G. Rinzler, Pavel Nikolaev, Andreas Thess
  • Patent number: 7264876
    Abstract: The present invention relates to new compositions of matter and articles of manufacture comprising SWNTs as nanometer scale conducting rods dispersed in an electrically-insulating matrix. These compositions of matter have novel and useful electrical, mechanical, and chemical properties including applications in antennas, electromagnetic and electro-optic devices, and high-toughness materials. Other compositions of matter and articles of manufacture are disclosed. including polymer-coated and polymer wrapped single-wall nanotubes (SWNTs), small ropes of polymer-coated and polymer-wrapped SWNTs and materials comprising same. This composition provides one embodiment of the SWNT conducting-rod composite mentioned above, and also enables creation of high-concentration suspensions of SWNTs and compatibilization of SWNTs with polymeric matrices in composite materials.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: August 23, 2001
    Date of Patent: September 4, 2007
    Assignee: William Marsh Rice University
    Inventors: Richard E. Smalley, Daniel T. Colbert, Ken A. Smith, Michael O'Connell
  • Patent number: 7204970
    Abstract: The present invention discloses the process of supplying high pressure (e.g., 30 atmospheres) CO that has been preheated (e.g., to about 1000° C.) and a catalyst precursor gas (e.g., Fe(CO)5) in CO that is kept below the catalyst precursor decomposition temperature to a mixing zone. In this mixing zone, the catalyst precursor is rapidly heated to a temperature that results in (1) precursor decomposition, (2) formation of active catalyst metal atom clusters of the appropriate size, and (3) favorable growth of SWNTs on the catalyst clusters. Preferably a catalyst cluster nucleation agency is employed to enable rapid reaction of the catalyst precursor gas to form many small, active catalyst particles instead of a few large, inactive ones. Such nucleation agencies can include auxiliary metal precursors that cluster more rapidly than the primary catalyst, or through provision of additional energy inputs (e.g., from a pulsed or CW laser) directed precisely at the region where cluster formation is desired.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: December 8, 2003
    Date of Patent: April 17, 2007
    Assignee: William Marsh Rice University
    Inventors: Richard E. Smalley, Ken A. Smith, Daniel T. Colbert, Pavel Nikolaev, Michael J. Bronikowski, Robert K. Bradley, Frank Rohmund
  • Patent number: 7205069
    Abstract: This invention relates generally to membranes comprising an array of single-wall carbon nanotubes (SWNT) wherein the membrane is nanoporous. In one embodiment, the membrane comprises a substantially two-dimensional array of a homogeneous population of single-walled nanotubes aggregated in substantially parallel orientation to form a monolayer extending in directions substantially perpendicular to the orientation of the individual nanotubes. Using single-wall carbon nanotubes of the same type and structure provides a homogeneous array. By using different single-wall carbon nanotubes, either a random or ordered heterogeneous structure can be produced by employing successive reactions after removal of previously masked areas of a substrate.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: December 28, 2001
    Date of Patent: April 17, 2007
    Assignee: William Marsh Rice Univeristy
    Inventors: Richard E. Smalley, Daniel T. Colbert, Hongjie Dai, Jie Liu, Andrew G. Rinzler, Jason H. Hafner, Kenneth A. Smith, Ting Guo, Pavel Nikolaev, Andreas Thess
  • Patent number: 7201887
    Abstract: The present invention concerns a method for growing carbon nanotubes using a catalyst system that preferentially promotes the growth of single- and double-wall carbon nanotubes, rather than larger multi-walled carbon nanotubes. Ropes of the carbon nanotubes are formed that comprise single-wall and/or double-wall carbon nanotubes.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: December 20, 2002
    Date of Patent: April 10, 2007
    Assignee: William Marsh Rice University
    Inventors: Richard E. Smalley, Jason H. Hafner, Daniel T. Colbert, Ken Smith
  • Patent number: 7150864
    Abstract: The present invention concerns a method for growing carbon nanotubes using a catalyst system that preferentially promotes the growth of single- and double-wall carbon nanotubes, rather than larger multi-walled carbon nanotubes. Ropes of the carbon nanotubes are formed that comprise single-wall and/or double-wall carbon nanotubes.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: December 20, 2002
    Date of Patent: December 19, 2006
    Assignee: William Marsh Rice University
    Inventors: Richard E. Smalley, Jason H. Hafner, Daniel T. Colbert, Ken A. Smith
  • Patent number: 7125534
    Abstract: Single-walled carbon nanotubes have been synthesized by the catalytic decomposition of both carbon monoxide and ethylene over a supported metal catalyst known to produce larger multi-walled nanotubes. Under certain conditions, there is no termination of nanotube growth, and production appears to be limited only by the diffusion of reactant gas through the product nanotube mat that covers the catalyst. The present invention concerns a catalyst-substrate system which promotes the growth of nanotubes that are predominantly single-walled tubes in a specific size range, rather than the large irregular-sized multi-walled carbon fibrils that are known to grow from supported catalysts.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: December 20, 2002
    Date of Patent: October 24, 2006
    Assignee: William Marsh Rice University
    Inventors: Richard E. Smalley, Jason H. Hafner, Daniel T. Colbert, Kenneth Smith
  • Patent number: 7115864
    Abstract: This invention relates generally to a single-wall carbon nanotube (SWNT) purification process and more particularly to a purification process that comprises heating the SWNT-containing felt under oxidizing conditions to remove the amorphous carbon deposits and other contaminating materials. In a preferred mode of this purification procedure, the felt is heated in an aqueous solution of an inorganic oxidant, such as nitric acid, a mixture of hydrogen peroxide and sulfuric acid, or a potassium permanganate. Preferably, SWNT-containing felts are refluxed in an aqueous solution of an oxidizing acid at a concentration high enough to etch away amorphous carbon deposits within a practical time frame, but not so high that the single-wall carbon nanotube material will be etched to a significant degree. When material having a high proportion of SWNT is purified, the preparation produced will be enriched in single-wall nanotubes, so that the SWNT are substantially free of other material.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: December 21, 2001
    Date of Patent: October 3, 2006
    Assignee: William Marsh Rice University
    Inventors: Daniel T. Colbert, Hongjie Dai, Jason H. Hafner, Andrew G. Rinzler, Richard E. Smalley, Jie Liu, Kenneth A. Smith, Ting Guo, Pavel Nikolaev, Andreas Thess
  • Patent number: 7108841
    Abstract: This invention relates generally to forming a patterned array of single-wall carbon nanotubes (SWNT). In one embodiment, a nanoscale array of microwells is provided on a substrate; a metal catalyst is deposited in each microwells; and a stream of hydrocarbon or CO feedstock gas is directed at the substrate under conditions that effect growth of single-wall carbon nanotubes from each microwell.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: December 28, 2001
    Date of Patent: September 19, 2006
    Assignee: William Marsh Rice University
    Inventors: Richard E. Smalley, Daniel T. Colbert, Hongjie Dai, Jie Liu, Andrew G. Rinzler, Jason H. Hafner, Ken Smith, Ting Guo, Pavel Nikolaev, Andreas Thess
  • Patent number: 7105596
    Abstract: This invention relates generally to a method for producing composites of single-wall carbon nanotubes (SWNTs) and compositions thereof. In one embodiment, the present invention involves a method of producing a composite material that includes a matrix and a carbon nanotube material embedded within said matrix. In another embodiment, a method of producing a composite material containing carbon nanotube material is disclosed. This method includes the steps of preparing an assembly of a fibrous material; adding the carbon nanotube material to the fibrous material; and adding a matrix material precursor to the carbon nanotube material and the fibrous material.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: December 28, 2001
    Date of Patent: September 12, 2006
    Assignee: William Marsh Rice University
    Inventors: Richard E. Smalley, Daniel T. Colbert, Hongjie Dai, Jie Liu, Andrew G. Rinzler, Jason H. Hafner, Kenneth A. Smith, Ting Guo, Pavel Nikolaev, Andreas Thess
  • Patent number: 7097820
    Abstract: This invention relates generally to carbon fiber produced from single-wall carbon nanotube (SWNT) molecular arrays. In one embodiment, the carbon fiber which comprises an aggregation of substantially parallel carbon nanotubes comprises more than one molecular array. Another embodiment of this invention is a large cable-like structure with enhanced tensile properties comprising a number of smaller separate arrays. In another embodiment, a composite structure is disclosed in which a central core array of metallic SWNTs is surrounded by a series of smaller circular non-metallic SWNT arrays.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: December 21, 2001
    Date of Patent: August 29, 2006
    Assignee: William Marsh Rice University
    Inventors: Daniel T. Colbert, Hongjie Dai, Jason H. Hafner, Andrew G. Rinzler, Richard E. Smalley
  • Patent number: 7087207
    Abstract: This invention relates generally to a forming an array of single-wall carbon nanotubes (SWNT) in an electric field and compositions thereof. In one embodiment, a purified bucky paper of single-wall carbon nanotubes is used as the starting material. Upon oxidative treatment of the bucky paper surface, many tube and/or rope ends protrude up from the surface of the paper. Disposing the resulting bucky paper in an electric field results in the protruding tubes and or ropes of single-wall carbon nanotubes aligning in a direction substantially perpendicular to the paper surface. These tubes tend to coalesce to form a molecular array. In another embodiment, a molecular array of SWNTs can be made by “combing” the purified bucky paper starting material with a sharp microscopic tip to align the nanotubes.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: August 7, 2003
    Date of Patent: August 8, 2006
    Assignee: William Marsh Rice University
    Inventors: Richard E. Smalley, Daniel T. Colbert, Hongjie Dai, Jie Liu, Andrew G. Rinzler, Jason H. Hafner, Kenneth A. Smith, Ting Guo, Pavel Nikolaev, Andreas Thess
  • Patent number: 7071406
    Abstract: This invention relates generally to forming an array of single-wall carbon nanotubes (SWNT). In one embodiment, a macroscopic molecular array is provided comprising at least about 106 single-wall carbon nanotubes in generally parallel orientation and having substantially similar lengths in the range of from about 5 to about 500 nanometers.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: December 28, 2001
    Date of Patent: July 4, 2006
    Assignee: William Marsh Rice University
    Inventors: Richard E. Smalley, Daniel T. Colbert, Hongjie Dai, Jie Liu, Andrew G. Rinzler, Jason H. Hafner, Kenneth A. Smith, Ting Guo, Pavel Nikolaev, Andreas Thess
  • Patent number: 7070754
    Abstract: This invention provides a method of making single-wall carbon nanotubes by laser vaporizing a mixture of carbon and one or more Group VIII transition metals. Single-wall carbon nanotubes preferentially form in the vapor and the one or more Group VIII transition metals catalyzed growth of the single-wall carbon nanotubes. In one embodiment of the invention, one or more single-wall carbon nanotubes are fixed in a high temperature zone so that the one or more Group VIII transition metals catalyze further growth of the single-wall carbon nanotube that is maintained in the high temperature zone. In another embodiment, two separate laser pulses are utilized with the second pulse timed to be absorbed by the vapor created by the first pulse.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: April 30, 2003
    Date of Patent: July 4, 2006
    Assignee: William Marsh Rice University
    Inventors: Richard E. Smalley, Daniel T. Colbert, Ting Guo, Andrew G. Rinzler, Pavel Nikolaev, Andreas Thess