Investigating the structure of boron nitride nanotubes by near-edge X-ray absorption fine structure (NEXAFS) spectroscopy.
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Herein, we demonstrate that NEXAFS is a very effective technique at (a) identifying the phases of boron nitride nanotubes with the potential of distinguishing between hexagonal BN and cubic BN, and (b) monitoring the presence of defects and degree of crystallinity in nanoscale samples. Specifically, a prepared sample of boron nitride nanotubes was characterized by NEXAFS. Our results show that the sample consisted of hexagonal BN tubes that were highly crystalline and sp2-hybridized.