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The improvement of pitch activation by graphene for long-cycle Li-S batteries

Abstract

It is interesting to convert industrial pitch to carbon material at high yield for energy storage owing to environmental and energy concerns. In this work, we activated coal tar pitch by a green process to obtain porous carbon sheets sandwiched by graphene and further impregnate and confine 71% sulphur as the cathode for long-cycle lithium-sulphur battery. At the presence of 4.0% of electrochemically-exfoliated graphene flakes, the yield of carbon of pitch is as high as 72% while the activation temperature of the pitch is as low as 700ºC. This carbon sheet has high specific surface area of 2930 m2/g and large pore volume of 1.5 cm3/g, nearly 3 times activated carbon derived from pitch without graphene. The cathode loaded with 71% sulfur (3.0 mg/cm2 of sulphur) initiated a discharge capacity of 1340 mAh/g at 0.05 C and faded only 0.001% per cycle at 1C during 201-1500 cycles. Surface oxygen groups and 1.1 nm nanopore confinement and conductive graphene sandwiched may contribute to stable reversible electrochemical reaction of Li and sulphur clusters. Our investigation demonstrates that graphene can enhance the pitch activation to high quality microporous carbon and further confine surphur species for long-cycle Li-S batteries.

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Publication details

The article was received on 08 Jun 2018, accepted on 14 Sep 2018 and first published on 14 Sep 2018


Article type: Paper
DOI: 10.1039/C8GC01799A
Citation: Green Chem., 2018, Accepted Manuscript
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    The improvement of pitch activation by graphene for long-cycle Li-S batteries

    M. Cheng, H. Zhao, Z. Zhao, J. Wang, L. Cao, H. Zhang, C. Wang, J. Wang, J. Wang and C. Lu, Green Chem., 2018, Accepted Manuscript , DOI: 10.1039/C8GC01799A

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