Carbon nanofluidics of rapid water transport for energy applications
Fast transport of water inside nanoscale graphitic surfaces, namely carbon nanotubes and graphene, forms the basis of aqueous carbon nanofluidic phenomena for which there are numerous applications in energy and environmental fields. In this tutorial review, we provide the basic principles of nanofluidics using carbon materials. We also address thermodynamic and structural aspects of favourable water confinement between hydrophobic carbon surfaces. We outline the experimental and theoretical history and consider the current status of ultrafast water transport inside carbon nanotubes, together with recent applications of aqueous carbon nanofluidic phenomena for energy generation and energy storage. We briefly discuss the challenges and opportunities for utilization of fast water transport in the graphitic nanoenvironment as a means to offer a clean and sustainable source of energy technology.