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Sustainable carbon nanofibers/nanotubes composites from cellulose as electrodes for supercapacitors

Journal article
Authors Volodymyr Kuzmenko
Olga Naboka
Mohammad Mazharul Haque
Henrik Staaf
Gert Göransson
Paul Gatenholm
Peter Enoksson
Published in Energy
Volume 90
Issue 2
Pages 1490-1496
ISSN 0360-5442
Publication year 2015
Published at Department of Chemistry and Molecular Biology
Pages 1490-1496
Language en
Links dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.energy.2015.06...
Keywords Renewable resources; carbon nanostructures; energy storage
Subject categories Electrochemistry, Materials Chemistry, Composite Science and Engineering, Surface engineering, Functional materials, Nano Technology

Abstract

Supercapacitors are efficient energy storage devices with long lifetime and safe service. Their effectiveness, to a big extent, is dependent on electrode materials used for accumulation of energy in form of electrostatic charges. Over the last decades, variety of carbonaceous electrode materials has been used in supercapacitors. Mostly the production of such electrodes is still oriented on unsustainable fossil fuels as precursors instead of sustainable renewable resources. In this study, freestanding carbonaceous electrode materials for supercapacitors were derived from cellulose, the most abundant renewable resource. They were synthesized via carbonization of fibrillar cellulose impregnated with CNTs (carbon nanotubes). The ensuing composite materials consisted of a CNF (carbon nanofiber) scaffold (fiber diameter in the range of 50-250 nm) covered with layers of CNTs (tube diameter in the range of 1-20 nm). Moreover, these composites were tested as electrode materials for supercapacitors. Incorporation of the CNTs into the CNFs improved electrical conductivity and also increased the surface area of the produced composite materials, which led to high specific capacitance values (up to 241 F/g), cyclic stability, and power density of these materials in electrochemical measurements. These results suggest that cellulose-derived original CNF/CNT composites are sustainable and efficient carbonaceous electrodes for supercapacitors.

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