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Conducting polypyrrole nanotubes: a review

Jaroslav Stejskal and Miroslava Trchová

Academy of Sciences of the Czech Republic, Prague 6, Czech Republic



Abstract: Polypyrrole nanotubes rank among the most conducting polymer materials. The role of the templates in the formation of nanotubes is analysed and various models are discussed. Special attention has been paid to the role of methyl-orange dye in guiding one-dimensional morphology. The tuning of reaction conditions by varying temperature, acidity, or the introduction of additives, such as dyes, affects both the morphology and conductivity of polypyrrole. The increase in conductivity need not always be associated with nanotubular morphology. In addition to conductivity, also other physical properties are reviewed with the special attention paid to the characterization by UV–visible, infrared, and Raman spectroscopies. The chemical properties are demonstrated by the ability of polypyrrole to reduce noble-metal compounds, and by salt–base transition associated with the conductivity decrease. Polypyrrole nanotubes maintain the most of conductivity under physiological conditions, and they are still conducting under alkaline conditions in the contrast to globular polypyrrole. Polypyrrole nanotubes convert to nitrogen-containing carbon nanotubes at elevated temperature, thus producing useful carbonaceous materials. To improve the processing, the nanotubes have been used in composites, colloids, or hydrogels. The applications of polypyrrole nanotubes extend to adsorbents, actuators, antioxidants, biomedicine, catalysts and electrocatalysts, electrorheological suspensions, electromagnetic interference shielding, and sensors, especially to those exploiting electrical conductivity and electrochemical activity, such as electrodes in batteries and supercapacitors.

Keywords: Polypyrrole nanotubes ; Conducting polymer ; Conductivity ; Carbonization ; Methyl orange ; Template 

Full paper is available at

DOI: 10.1007/s11696-018-0394-x


Chemical Papers 72 (7) 1563–1595 (2018)

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