Multi-wall nanotubes can appear either in the form of a coaxial assembly of SWNT similar to a coaxial cable, or as a single sheet of graphite rolled into the shape of a scroll.
The diameters of MWNT are typically in the range of 5 nm to 50 nm. The interlayer distance in MWNT is close to the distance between graphene layers in graphite.
MWNT are easier to produce in high volume quantities than SWNT. However, the structure of MWNT is less well understood because of its greater complexity and variety. Regions of structural imperfection may diminish its desirable material properties.
The challenge in producing SWNT on a large scale as compared to MWNT is reflected in the prices of SWNT, which currently remain higher than MWNT.
SWNT, however, have a performance of up to ten times better, and are outstanding for very specific applications.