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Issue 7, 2020
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A universal strategy to obtain highly redox-active porous carbons for efficient energy storage

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Abstract

Quinones are highly redox-active due to their remarkable electron transfer kinetics and electrochemical reversibility, and amines credited with exceptional electron-pair donicity can strengthen the redox kinetics of quinones and simultaneously incorporate electroactive nitrogen species. Herein, a universal route based on benzoquinone and amines with different chemical structures is developed to engineer O/N codoped porous carbons. This approach drives the designability of high-surface-area carbons with tailored geometries (nanosphere, nanofiber, granule and honeycomb), ensuring fast ion/electron transport kinetics to support electrical double layer capacitance. Besides, highly redox-active O/N heteroatoms trigger remarkable pseudocapacitance via reversible faradaic reactions of benzoquinone/hydroquinone transformation and pyridinic/pyrrolic nitrogen response in a H2SO4 electrolyte. Consequently, a representative supercapacitor achieves greatly enhanced electrochemical reaction dynamics, yielding an extraordinary energy density (18.2 W h kg−1), ultralong stability and excellent high-rate features (90.1% energy retention over 100 000 successive cycles at 20 A g−1). The enhanced wetting compatibility of carbon surfaces/electrolyte ions resulting from O/N doping can further extend the carbon electrodes to water-in-salt, organic and ionic liquid electrolytes for constructing high energy supercapacitors (up to 90.6 W h kg−1). This work provides a general guidance to design high-performance carbons toward efficient energy storage.

Graphical abstract: A universal strategy to obtain highly redox-active porous carbons for efficient energy storage

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Supplementary files

Article information


Submitted
10 Dec 2019
Accepted
16 Jan 2020
First published
16 Jan 2020

J. Mater. Chem. A, 2020,8, 3717-3725
Article type
Paper

A universal strategy to obtain highly redox-active porous carbons for efficient energy storage

Z. Song, L. Miao, L. Li, D. Zhu, Y. Lv, W. Xiong, H. Duan, Z. Wang, L. Gan and M. Liu, J. Mater. Chem. A, 2020, 8, 3717
DOI: 10.1039/C9TA13520K

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