Nitrogen-enriched hierarchically porous carbon materials fabricated by graphene aerogel templated Schiff-base chemistry for high performance electrochemical capacitors†
This article presents a facile and effective approach for synthesizing three-dimensional (3D) graphene-coupled Schiff-base hierarchically porous polymers (GS-HPPs). The method involves the polymerization of melamine and 1,4-phthalaldehyde, yielding Schiff-base porous polymers on the interconnected macroporous frameworks of 3D graphene aerogels. The as-synthesized GS-HPPs possess hierarchically porous structures containing macro-/meso-/micropores, along with large specific surface areas up to 776 m2 g−1 and high nitrogen contents up to 36.8 wt%. Consequently, 3D nitrogen-enriched hierarchically porous carbon (N-HPC) materials with macro-/meso-/micropores were obtained by the pyrolysis of the GS-HPPs at a high temperature of 800 °C under a nitrogen atmosphere. With a hierarchically porous structure, good thermal stability and a high nitrogen-doping content up to 7.2 wt%, the N-HPC samples show a high specific capacitance of 335 F g−1 at 0.1 A g−1 in 6 M KOH, a good capacitance retention with increasing current density, and an outstanding cycling stability. The superior electrochemical performance means that the N-HPC materials have great potential as electrode materials for supercapacitors.