Controlling Solubility: A Chemistry Approach toward Preparing Nitrogen-Doped Hollow Carbon Nanospheres
Nitrogen-doped hollow carbon nanospheres have inspired extreme interests in various fields such as catalysis, biomedicine, adsorption and energy storage/conversion. The most widely used methods are template-based routes. However, the operating procedures are tedious and the mechanism of formation process is still unclear. Here, on the basis of solubility control both in the formation and core dissolution process of the spheres, we have designed a new protocol to synthesize nitrogen-doped hollow carbon nanospheres through modulating the area-specific distribution of polymeric component in a single nanoparticle, followed by formaldehyde solution post-treating. The hollow inner structure was formed based on the reversibility of chemical reactions without any template assistance. The forming mechanisms of novel solid polymer spheres and the hollow structure have been investigated. The size, morphology and shell thickness of spheres could be tuned by changing the amount of reactants, the ratio of acetone/water and subsequent treatment process. Furthermore, the nitrogen-doped hollow carbon nanospheres exhibited both high stability and capacity as Li-S battery cathode with a capacity of 528 m Ah g-1 after 300 cycles at 0.5C.
- This article is part of the themed collection: 2019 Journal of Materials Chemistry A HOT Papers