Three-dimensional metal/oxide nanocone arrays for high-performance electrochemical pseudocapacitors
Three-dimensional (3D) electrodes are critical for enabling high-performance power sources. We report here on the design and fabrication, by combining imprint and soft-printing technologies, of 3D nanocone arrays as a novel platform for high performance pseudocapacitors. Such purpose-built 3D nanocone arrays have the advantages of simplicity/versatility/reliability of fabrication, generality to a vast range of active materials, high electrode surface area, and ease of electrolyte permeation. As a demonstration of principle, Au and MnO2 were sequentially deposited forming a 3D Au/MnOx nanocone array electrode for a pseudocapacitor device. This device achieved a specific mass (areal) capacitance of 840.3 F g−1 (88.2 mF cm−2) at a current density of 2 A g−1. Additionally, the asymmetric supercapacitor using the Au/MnOx nanocone array as the positive electrode and a carbon-based material as the negative electrode achieved a capacitance of 108.5 F g−1 at a current density of 1 A g−1, corresponding to an energy density of as high as 46.8 W h kg−1 at a power density of 0.72 kW kg−1. The cell still preserved 96.5% of the initial capacitance even after 2000 cycles at a current density of 2 A g−1. The initial result is at least on a par with those of the best asymmetric supercapacitors reported so far, and thus bolsters the development value of the conductive nanocone arrays for high-performance supercapacitors and other energy-storage devices.