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Long-Term-Stable, Solution-Processable, Electrochromic Carbon Nanotubes/Polymer Composite for Smart Supercapacitor with Wide Working Potential Window

Abstract

Electrochromic supercapacitor (SC) as a multifunctional energy storage device, have very important research significance and a broad space for development. The unavoidable challenge for an electrochromic SC is the simultaneous achievement of high energy density, flexibility, and outstanding stability through economically feasible materials and simple manufacturing processes. Despite great efforts in the development of electrochromic SC electrode materials, serious challenges remain for many materials to achieve the versatile processability due to their poor solubility. In addition, the voltage window is quite narrow and energy density is relatively low, which limit their practical applications. Herein, a novel solution-processable composite material, MWCNT-PBDTC, has been synthesized through direct Williamson reaction between hydroxylated carbon nanotubes MWCNT-OH and the conjugated polymer PBDTC-Br with the side chain terminal functionalized with bromo. The electrochromic and electrochemical properties of the MWCNT-PBDTC films, obtained by spin-coating, were investigated in details. Furthermore, the electrochromic symmetrical supercapacitor (SC) device using MWCNT-PBDTC films as the electrodes was fabricated with PMMA-based solid electrolyte, delivering a high energy density of 174.7 W h kg-1 and a quite wide working potential window of 4.8 V. The cycling stability of the supercapacitor was also tested, and the results indicated that the specific capacitance still could retain well over 96% of the initial value after 5000 consecutive charging/discharging cycles. Meanwhile, the SC device exhibited a distinct and reversible color transition from black brown (discharged state) to light gray (charged state), with a high optical contrast at a wavelength of 465 nm. In short, the novel electrochromic composite could be applied as one of the most promising electrode material for smart supercapacitor.

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Publication details

The article was received on 14 May 2018, accepted on 02 Sep 2018 and first published on 04 Sep 2018


Article type: Paper
DOI: 10.1039/C8TA04465A
Citation: J. Mater. Chem. A, 2018, Accepted Manuscript
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    Long-Term-Stable, Solution-Processable, Electrochromic Carbon Nanotubes/Polymer Composite for Smart Supercapacitor with Wide Working Potential Window

    T. Ye, Y. Sun, X. Zhao, B. Lin, H. Yang, X. Zhang and L. Guo, J. Mater. Chem. A, 2018, Accepted Manuscript , DOI: 10.1039/C8TA04465A

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