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Issue 2, 2019
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Using inorganic dynamic porogens for preparing high-surface-area capacitive carbons with tailored micropores

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Abstract

A high-performance capacitive carbon should simultaneously possess the characteristics of high surface area, high tap density, electrical conductivity and good wettability to electrolyte. However, these features are usually incompatible and difficult to integrate into one carbon material. Herein, we consider this challenge and report a new preparation method of capacitive carbons that can meet the abovementioned characteristics using an inorganic CuCl salt as a dynamic porogen and L-glutamic acid as a carbon precursor. When the amount of CuCl2 was controlled for exact coordination of Cu2+ with NH2 and COO of L-glutamic acid, Cu2+ was atomically dispersed by the formation of Cu–N and COO–Cu. Upon high-temperature pyrolysis, Cu2+ was gradually reduced to Cu+; meanwhile, the evaporation of CuCl at around 350 °C resulted in the formation of uniform ultramicropores. After further pyrolysis to 900 °C, the remaining copper species were reduced to Cu and then catalyzed the graphitization of the carbon product. When the amount of CuCl2 exceeded theoretical coordinated proportions, the molten salt effect of the aggregation of CuCl occurred over 450 °C, resulting in the generation of supermicropores. Eventually, the obtained carbon showed an exceptionally high surface area of 2051 m2 g−1 and 3.22 at% nitrogen content with tap density of 0.35 g cm−3, which resulted in specific capacitance reaching 273 F g−1 at 0.5 A g−1 and charge transfer of 0.21 Ω with cycle life over 20 000 cycles as a supercapacitor electrode. Considering the recyclability of the used inorganic salt and after comparing with conventional surfactant templating, we conclude that our synthesis opens up a new energy-saving approach for preparing porous carbon with tailorable micropore sizes and high surface areas even at temperature as low as 350 °C.

Graphical abstract: Using inorganic dynamic porogens for preparing high-surface-area capacitive carbons with tailored micropores

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Publication details

The article was received on 29 Oct 2018, accepted on 26 Nov 2018 and first published on 27 Nov 2018


Article type: Paper
DOI: 10.1039/C8TA10411E
Citation: J. Mater. Chem. A, 2019,7, 687-692

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    Using inorganic dynamic porogens for preparing high-surface-area capacitive carbons with tailored micropores

    X. Dong, W. Li, B. Jiang, Y. Zhou and A. Lu, J. Mater. Chem. A, 2019, 7, 687
    DOI: 10.1039/C8TA10411E

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