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Binary N,S-doped carbon nanospheres from bio-inspired artificial melanosomes: Route to efficient air electrodes for seawater batteries

Abstract

immense potential for future energy storage devices; however, lack of high-performance negative and positive electrodes significantly challenges their practical applications. In this study, N-doped and N,S-doped carbon nanospheres (referred to as NCS and NSCS, respectively) are synthesized via the pyrolysis of melanosomes, which are bio-inspired polymers. Electrocatalytic activity measurements reveal the bifunctionality of the prepared catalysts. NSCS exhibit a distinctively higher performance when used as a air electrode in seawater batteries to NCS at ambient condition (refered as static mode hereafter). Further, by the introduction of air flow into the seawater electrolyte (refered as flow mode hereafter), NSCS exhibits an improved cell discharge potential. The high performnce of cell is attributed to high surface area; bifunctional electrocatalytic activity; generation of new active sites; improvement of spin density in NSCS; and continuous flow of air to the electrolyte. The cell in the flow mode exhibits an overpotential gap of 0.56 V, a round-trip efficiency of 84%, a maximum power density of 203 mW g−1, and an outstanding cyclic stability of up to 100 cycles. The developed synthetic method provides an effective, scalable approach for the doping of binary or ternary atoms into the carbon host matrix, which can motivate further experimental and theoretical studies of electrode materials in various energy storage devices. In addition, the concept and results obtained by the introduction of air flow into the electrolyte can lead to the improvement of cell performance in terms of electrical energy efficiency, which can be exploited in various metal–air battery.

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Publication details

The article was accepted on 08 Nov 2018 and first published on 10 Nov 2018


Article type: Paper
DOI: 10.1039/C8TA10327E
Citation: J. Mater. Chem. A, 2018, Accepted Manuscript
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    Binary N,S-doped carbon nanospheres from bio-inspired artificial melanosomes: Route to efficient air electrodes for seawater batteries

    Z. Khan, S. O. Park, J. Yang, S. Park, R. Shanker, H. Song, Y. Kim, S. K. Kwak and H. Ko, J. Mater. Chem. A, 2018, Accepted Manuscript , DOI: 10.1039/C8TA10327E

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