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Journal of Nanomaterials
Volume 2011, Article ID 857864, 8 pages
Research Article

Three Possible Encapsulation Mechanics of TiO2 Nanoparticles into Single-Walled Carbon Nanotubes

1Department of Mathematics, Faculty of Science, Mahidol University, Rama 6 Road Bangkok 10400, Thailand
2Centre of Excellence in Mathematics, CHE, Si Ayutthaya Road Bangkok 10400, Thailand

Received 7 February 2011; Accepted 3 May 2011

Academic Editor: Shaogang Hao

Copyright © 2011 Wisit Sukchom et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


Titanium dioxide nanoparticle (TiO2-NP) is widely used in manufactured nanomaterials such as sunscreens, cosmetics, drugs, and some food products. It can be encapsulated in a single-walled carbon nanotube (SWNT) depending on their physical and chemical interactions. On applying the Lennard-Jones potential function and the continuous approximation, we determine three encapsulation mechanisms for spherical shape TiO2-NP entering a tube: (i) head-on at the tube open end, (ii) around the edge of the tube open end, and (iii) through a defect opening on the tube wall. The total potential energy of the system is obtained as an exact expression by performing double surface integrals. We find that the TiO2-NP is most (least) likely to be encapsulated into a SWNT by head-on configuration (around the edge of the tube open end). This encapsulation procedure is a potential application for targeted drug delivery. For convenience, throughout this analysis all configurations are assumed to be in vacuum and the TiO2-NP is initially at rest.