Assisting Baseball Bat Manufacturer
Through Microscopy: A Case Study
THE PROBLEM: A baseball bat manufacturer uses carbon nanotubes (CNT) to enhance the strength and the performance of the equipment. The manufacturer was concerned about the distribution of the CNT and wanted to better understand the manufacturing process.
THE ANALYSIS: Single wall and multi-walled CNT were identified. A mapping instrument was used to obtain distribution maps of the CNT-containing material. In order to confirm the presence of CNT, the material was isolated and analyzed with another instrument to obtain a CNT image.
THE IMAGE: The top image on the left shows a Confocal Raman spectrum, while the image to the right shows a distribution map. The bottom image shows the isolated nanotubes in epoxy.
THE OUTCOME: MVA’s results indicated that the bat contained single and multi-walled CNT heterogeneously distributed throughout the epoxy binder of the carbon fibers. This data helped them understand the manufacturing process and find ways to make the process more efficient.