Now, researchers from Georgia Institute of Technology and Harvard Medical School in the US have incorporated a shape identification function that is often used in biomedical image analysis to identify individual CNTs in images of CNT composites automatically.

First, CNTs with different dimensions and shapes are automatically extracted from SEM images of the sample. Then the spatial and orientational dispersion of the extracted CNTs are computed, respectively, as a spatial dispersion index and an orientational dispersion index.

The obtained indices will be a great help in optimizing processing conditions and in predicting the properties of the composite. Also, this method can be extended to other polymer composites with high-aspect-ratio fillers.

Full details can be found in the journal Nanotechnology.