Graphene is a single atomic layer of carbon atoms, and has exceptional electrical, mechanical, and optical characteristics. It has been broadly utilized in the fields of material science, physics, chemistry, device fabrication, information, and biology. In this review paper, we briefly investigate the ideas, structure, characteristics, and fabrication techniques for graphene applications in lithium ion batteries (LIBs). In LIBs, a constant three-dimensional (3D) conductive system can adequately enhance the transportation of electrons and ions of the electrode material. The use of 3D graphene and graphene-expansion electrode materials can significantly upgrade LIBs characteristics to give higher electric conductivity, greater capacity, and good stability. This review demonstrates several recent advances in graphenecontaining LIB electrode materials, and addresses probable trends into the future.
In the aerospace field, Carbon/Cork composites have been used for rocket propulsion systems as a light weight structural component with a high bending stiffness and high thermal insulation properties. For the fabrication of a carbon composite with a heat insulation cork part, the bonding properties between them are very important to determine the service life of the Carbon/Cork composite structure. In this study, the changes in the interfacial adhesion and mechanical properties of Carbon/Cork composites under accelerated aging conditions were investigated. The accelerated aging experiments were performed with different temperatures and humidity conditions. The properties of the aged Carbon/Cork composites were evaluated mainly with the interfacial strength. Finally, the lifetime prediction of the Carbon/Cork composites was performed with the long-term property data under accelerated conditions.
A novel, unique, and effective method for carbon nanotube (CNT) dispersion by the free arc stimulation is proposed. CNTs are introduced as an aerogel into the air space via the dispersion method and can be utilized as a solution by adding it to solvents. The volume of the original generated CNT aerogel with a high-volume expansion ratio displays a performance two orders of magnitudes better than that of raw CNTs, which is considered a powerful characterization of the dispersion effect. The CNT aerogel, which was observed by scanning electron microscopy also showed a satisfactory dispersion morphology. Its structure and properties were tested before and after dispersion by Raman spectroscopy and great consistency was observed, which proved that the CNTs were undamaged. This approach may greatly promote the large-scale application of CNTs.
Coke aggregates and carbon artifacts were produced to investigate the interactions of coke and pitch during the kneading process. In addition, the kneading ratio of the coke and binder pitch for the coke aggregates was controlled to identify the formation of voids and pores during carbonization at 900°C. Experiments and thermogravimetric analysis revealed that carbon yields were improved over the theoretical yield calculated by the weight loss of the coke and binder pitch; the improvement was due to the binding interactions between the coke particles and binder pitch by the kneading process. The true, apparent, and bulk densities fluctuated according to the kneading ratio. This study confirmed that an excessive or insufficient kneading ratio decreases the density with degradation of the packing characteristics. The porosity analysis indicated that formation of voids and pores by the binder pitch increased the porosity after carbonization. Image analysis confirmed that the kneading ratio affected the formation of the coke domains and the voids and pores, which revealed the relations among the carbon yields, density, and porosity.
This paper examines a simple one-step and catalyst-free method for synthesizing carbon nanoparticles from aliphatic alcohols and n-hexane with linear molecule formations by using a stable solution plasma process with a bipolar pulse and an external resistor. When the external resistor is adopted, it is observed that the current spikes are dramatically decreased, which induced production of a more stable discharge. Six aliphatic linear alcohols (methanol- hexanol) containing carbon with oxygen sources are studied as possible precursors for the massive production of carbon nanoparticles. Additional study is also carried out with the use of n-hexane containing many carbons without an oxygen source in order to enhance the formation of carbon nanoparticles and to eliminate unwanted oxygen effects. The obtained carbon nanoparticles are characterized with field emission-scanning electron microscopy, energy dispersive X-ray spectroscopy, and Raman spectroscopy. The results show that with increasing carbon ratios in alcohol content, the synthesis rate of carbon nanoparticles is increased, whereas the size of the carbon nanoparticles is decreased. Moreover, the degree of graphitization of the carbon nanoparticles synthesized from 1-hexanol and n-hexane with a high carbon (C)/oxygen (O) ratio and low or no oxygen is observed to be greater than that of the carbon nanoparticles synthesized from the corresponding materials with a low C/O ratio.
Modified pitch A (MPA) and modified pitch B (MPB) were prepared by oxidative polymerization and thermal polycondensation reaction with refined pitch as the raw material, respectively. The toluene soluble components (TS-1 and TS-2) were obtained by solvent extraction from MPA and MPB, separately. The Flynn-Wall-Ozawa method and Kissinger-Akahira- Sunose method were used to calculate the pyrolysis activation energy of TS. The Satava- Sestak method was used to investigate the pyrolysis kinetic parameters of TS. Moreover, the optical microstructure of the thermal conversion products (TS-1-P and TS-2-P) by calcination shows that TS-1-P has more contents of mosaic structure and lower contents of fine fiber structure than TS-2-P. The research result obtained by a combination of X-ray diffraction and the curve-fitting method revealed that the ratios of ordered carbon crystallite (Ig) in TS-1-P and TS-2-P were 0.3793 and 0.4417, respectively. The distributions of carbon crystallite on TS-1-P and TS-2-P were calculated by Raman spectrum and curve-fitting analysis. They show that the thermal conversion product of TS-2 has a better graphite crystallite structure than TS-1.
High surface carbon aerogels with hierarchical and tunable pore structure were prepared using ionic liquid as carbon precursor via a simple salt templating method. The as-prepared carbon aerogels were characterized by nitrogen sorption measurement and scanning electron microscopy. Through instant visual observation experiments, it was found that salt eutectics not only serve as solvents, porogens, and templates, but also play an important role of foaming agents in the preparation of carbon aerogels. When the pyrolyzing temperature rises from 800 to 1000°C, the higher temperature deepens the carbonization reaction further to form a nanoporous interconnected fractal structure and increase the contribution of super-micropores and small mesopores and improve the specific surface area and pore volume, while having few effects on the macropores. As the mass ratio of ionic liquid to salt eutectics drops from 55% to 15%, that is, the content of salt eutectics increases, the salt eutectics gradually aggregate from ion pairs, to clusters with minimal free energy, and finally to a continuous salt phase, leading to the formation of micropores, uniform mesopores, and macropores, respectively; these processes cause BET specific surface area initially to increase but subsequently to decrease. With the mass ratio of ionic liquids to salts at 35% and carbonization temperature at 900°C, the specific surface area of the resultant carbon aerogels reached 2309 m2 g–1. By controlling the carbonization temperature and mass ratio of the raw materials, the hierarchically porous architecture of carbon aerogels can be tuned; this advantage will promote their use in the fields of electrodes and adsorption.
Transition-metal-embedded carbon nanotubes (CNTs) have been accepted as a novel type of sensing material due to the combined advantage of the transition metal, which possesses good catalytic behavior for gas interaction, and CNTs, with large effective surface areas that present good adsorption ability towards gas molecules. In this work, we simulate the adsorption of O2 and O3 onto Rh-doped CNT in an effort to understand the adsorbing behavior of such a surface. Results indicate that the proposed material presents good adsorbing ability and capacities for these two gases, especially O3 molecules, as a result of the relatively large conductivity changes. The frontier molecular orbital theory reveals that the conductivity of Rh-CNT would undergo a decrease after the adsorption of two such oxidizing gases due to the lower electron activity and density of this media. Our calculations are meaningful as they can supply experimentalists with potential sensing material prospects with which to exploit chemical sensors.
Linear carbon chains (LCCs) encapsulated inside the hollow cores of carbon nanotubes (CNTs) have been experimentally synthesized and structurally characterized by Raman spectroscopy and transmission electron microscopy. However, in terms of electronic conductivity, their transportation mechanism has not been investigated theoretically or experimentally. In this study, the density of states and quantum conductance spectra were simulated through density functional theory combined with the non-equilibrium Green function method. The encapsulated LCCs inside (5,5), (6,4), and (9,0) single-walled carbon nanotubes (SWCNTs) exhibited a drastic change from metallic to semiconducting or from semiconducting to metallic due to the strong charge transfer between them. On the other hand, the electronic change in the conductance value of LCCs encapsulated inside the (7,4) SWCNT were in good agreement with the superposition of the individual SWCNTs and the isolated LCCs owing to the weak charge transfer.
To improve the flame retardant performance of cellulose fibers, fluorine functional groups were introduced under various controlled fluorination conditions. The properties of the fluorinated cellulose fibers were analyzed by X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy and a thermogravimetric analysis. The fluorine functional group content in the fluorinated cellulose fibers increased with an increase in the fluorination temperature. However, the fluorination reaction increased the char yield and decreased the rate of degradation of the cellulose fibers by introducing donors, enabling the formation of a thick and compact char layer. Therefore, the flame retardant properties of cellulose fibers were improved following the fluorination treatment.
In this study, an empirical relationship between the energy band gap of multi-walled carbon nanotubes (MWCNTs) and synthesis parameters in a chemical vapor deposition (CVD) reactor using factorial design of experiment was established. A bimetallic (Fe-Ni) catalyst supported on CaCO3 was synthesized via wet impregnation technique and used for MWCNT growth. The effects of synthesis parameters such as temperature, time, acetylene flow rate, and argon carrier gas flow rate on the MWCNTs energy gap, yield, and aspect ratio were investigated. The as-prepared supported bimetallic catalyst and the MWCNTs were characterized for their morphologies, microstructures, elemental composition, thermal profiles and surface areas by high-resolution scanning electron microscope, high resolution transmission electron microscope, energy dispersive X-ray spectroscopy, thermal gravimetry analysis and Brunauer-Emmett-Teller. A regression model was developed to establish the relationship between band gap energy, MWCNTs yield and aspect ratio. The results revealed that the optimum conditions to obtain high yield and quality MWCNTs of 159.9% were: temperature (700ºC), time (55 min), argon flow rate (230.37 mL min–1) and acetylene flow rate (150 mL min–1) respectively. The developed regression models demonstrated that the estimated values for the three response variables; energy gap, yield and aspect ratio, were 0.246 eV, 557.64 and 0.82. The regression models showed that the energy band gap, yield, and aspect ratio of the MWCNTs were largely influenced by the synthesis parameters and can be controlled in a CVD reactor.
Empty fruit bunch (EFB) char was used to remove NOx and odorous substances. The physicochemical properties of the EFB chars were altered by steam or KOH treatments. The Brunauer-Emmett-Teller surface area and porosity were measured to determine the properties of the modified EFB chars. The deNOx and adsorption test for hydrogen sulphide and acetaldehyde were performed to determine the feasibility of the modified EFB chars. The KOH-treated EFB (KEFB) char revealed higher deNOx efficiency than with commercial activated carbon. The Cu-impregnated EFB char also had high deNOx efficiency at temperatures higher than 150°C. The KEFB char showed the highest hydrogen sulphide and acetaldehyde adsorption ability, followed by the steam-treated EFB char and untreated EFB char. Moreover, the product prepared by sulfonation of EFB char showed excellent performance for esterification of palm fatty acid distillate for biodiesel production.
This study examined the influence of operating parameters on the electrosorptive recovery system of lithium ions from aqueous solutions using a spinel-type lithium manganese oxide adsorbent electrode and investigated the electrosorption kinetics and isotherms. The results revealed that the electrosorption data of lithium ions from the lithium containing aqueous solution were well-fitted to the Langmuir isotherm at electrical potentials lower than –0.4 V and to the Freundlich isotherm at electrical potentials higher than –0.4 V. This result may due to the formation of a thicker electrical double layer on the surface of the electrode at higher electrical potentials. The results showed that the electrosorption reached equilibrium within 200 min under an electrical potential of –1.0 V, and the pseudo-second-order kinetic model was correlated with the experimental data. Moreover, the adsorption of lithium ions was dependent on pH and temperature, and the results indicate that higher pH values and lower temperatures are more suitable for the electrosorptive adsorption of lithium ions from aqueous solutions. Thermodynamic results showed that the calculated activation energy of 22.61 kJ mol–1 during the electrosorption of lithium ions onto the adsorbent electrode was primarily controlled by a physical adsorption process. The recovery of adsorbed lithium ions from the adsorbent electrode reached the desorption equilibrium within 200 min under reverse electrical potential of 3.5 V.
Owing to their scalability, flexible operation, and long cycle life, vanadium redox flow batteries (VRFBs) have gained immense attention over the past few years. However, the VRFBs suffer from significant polarization, which decreases their cell efficiency. The activation polarization occurring during vanadium redox reactions greatly affects the overall performance of VRFBs. Therefore, it is imperative to develop electrodes with numerous catalytic sites and a long cycle life. In this study, we synthesized heteroatom-rich carbon-based freestanding papers (H-CFPs) by a facile dispersion and filtration process. The H-CFPs exhibited high specific surface area (~820 m2 g–1) along with a number of redox-active heteroatoms (such as oxygen and nitrogen) and showed high catalytic activity for vanadium redox reactions. The H-CFP electrodes showed excellent electrochemical performance. They showed low anodic and cathodic peak potential separation (ΔEp) values of ~120 mV (positive electrolyte) and ~124 mV (negative electrolyte) in cyclic voltammetry conducted at a scan rate of 5 mV s–1. Hence, the H-CFP-based VRFBs showed significantly reduced polarization.
Nitrogen-doped carbons have attracted much attention due to their novel application in relation to gas storage. In this study, nitrogen-doped porous carbons were synthesized using SBA-15 as a template, polypyrrole as the carbon and nitrogen precursor, and KOH as an activating agent. The effect of the activation temperature (600–850°C) on the CO2 adsorption capacity of the obtained porous carbons was studied. Characterization of the resulting carbons showed that they were micro-/meso-porous carbon materials with a well-developed pore structure that varied with the activation temperature. The highest surface area of 1488 m2 g–1 was achieved at an activation temperature of 800°C (AC-800). The nitrogen content of the activated carbon decreased from 4.74 to 1.39 wt% with an increase in the activation temperature from 600 to 850°C. This shows that nitrogen is oxidized and more easily removed than carbon during the activation process, which indicates that C-N bonds are more easily ruptured at higher temperatures. Furthermore, CO2 adsorption isotherms showed that AC-800 exhibited the best CO2 adsorption capacity of 110 mg g–1 at 298 K and 1 bar.