High surface area conductive carbon materials with tailored pore structures and porosity are highly desirable for many applications such as fuel cells, electrochemical energy storage in supercapacitors, electrochemical sensing, and catalysis. Many such materials, including activated carbon and multi- and single-walled carbon nanotubes, have been explored for supercapacitors. A higher capacitance can be achieved by surface modification of the carbon materials with redox active materials such as transition metal oxides. Mesoporous carbon/metal oxide composites - composed of a mesoporous carbon framework whose pore walls are lined with metal oxide nanoparticles - are a promising candidate for supercapacitor applications. Most methods of synthesizing such materials are two steps procedures, like coating metal oxide on pre-formed carbon materials. Our group has been working on a one-step process for synthesizing a mesoporous carbon/metal oxide nanocomposite by combining condensation of metal oxide with carbonization of carbon precursors. Here we present a one-step synthesis for ordered mesoporous metal oxide-carbon nanocomposites with uniform mesopore structures. These were characterized by X-ray diffraction (XRD), scanning electron microscopy (SEM), N2 sorption, transmission electron microscope (TEM), and other techniques. Electrochemical double layer capacitance has been measured in the nanocomposites and compared with pure carbon and metal oxide materials to illustrate their synergetic capacitance improvement.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Chemical Engineering(all)