This paper provides a review of recent experimental techniques developed for shell engineering individual multiwalled carbon nanotubes (MWNTs). Basic processes for the nanorobotic manipulation of MWNTs inside a transmission electron microscope are investigated. MWNTs, bamboo-structured carbon nanotubes (CNTs), Cu-filled CNTs, and CNTs with quantum dots attached are used as test structures for manipulation. Picking is realized using van der Waals forces, “sticky” probes, electron-beam-induced deposition, and electric breakdown. Cap opening and shell shortening are presented using field emission current. Controlled peeling and thinning of the shells of MWNTs are achieved by electric breakdown, and changes in MWNT structures are correlated with electricalmeasurements. These processes are fundamental for the characterization of nanoscale materials, the structuring of nanosized building blocks, and the prototyping of nanoelectromechanical systems.
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