A seamless aqueous arc discharge process was developed to produce graphitic carbon nanostructures as a novel fabrication process to control the morphological transition at nanoscale. The manipulation of graphitic carbon from zero- (0D) to two-dimensional (2D) nanostructures was achieved by an aqueous arc discharge process proportional to the arc discharge power. The aqueous arc discharge process can also incorporate an oil-in-water (O/W) emulsion in the aqueous dielectric medium, which leads to the plastic deformation of 2D graphene sheets into 3D crumpled graphene spheres at moderate current levels (<5 A). At higher current levels, hollow graphitic carbon nanoparticles were produced by generation of a toluene bubble-template, the nucleation of carbon molecules and subsequent growth into graphitic structures in a single batch.
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