Phenol resin carbonized films with anisotropic shrinkage driven ordered mesoporous structures†
High surface area and accessibility to the surface are very important for designing advanced electrodes for energy storage, battery, and capacitor systems because electrons are delivered at the surfaces of carbon based electrodes after diffusion into pore spaces. In this study, phenol resin carbonized porous films with controllable mesostructures and highly accessible surfaces were fabricated using the common EOnPOmEOn-type triblock copolymer. Unique mesostructural transformation of cage-type and tubular mesopores by anisotropic shrinkage was demonstrated from analytical data of the films carbonized at different temperatures. The development of the soft-templating method to obtain surfactant assisted carbon films showing high surface areas is quite significant because further design of mesostructure (anisotropic shrinkage), composition (nitrogen doping, combination with other well-designed carbon based materials) and morphology (coating, spraying, etc.) would be possible for making high-performance electrodes for fuel cells, solar cells, batteries, and energy storage systems, as well as catalytic supports and adsorbents for functional chemical synthesis, purification, and separation.