Making the Desertlands

A.J. Hart and R. Wartena, 2005

Framed color-enhanced SEM image of carbon nanotubes structures on a silicon substrate, approx. 23" x 17.5"

Finalist in Material Research Society's Science as Art competition at the Spring 2005 meeting in San Francisco, CA

The concept for this piece has been to create the whole thing. What you see in front of you is the end result of a process where a world was grown from carbon nanotubes, its image was captured and then modified only by colorizing and blurring areas, and finally presented in a handmade frame.

This image depicts structures of vertically-aligned carbon nanotubes grown from patterns of metal catalyst on a silicon substrate. The tallest structures shown are approximately 1 millimeter high, and consist of individual nanotubes approximately 10 nm in diameter. The structures were grown in a C2H4/H4/Ar atmosphere at 750 °C, from a catalyst film of Fe/Al2O3. The images were initially taken using a Philips XL30 FEG-ESEM, and modified using Adobe Photoshop.


Original SEM image

Enhanced SEM image