Nanowire Templated Semihollow Bicontinuous Graphene Scrolls: Designed Construction, Mechanism, and Enhanced Energy Storage Performance

MY Yan and FC Wang and CH Han and XY Ma and X Xu and QY An and L Xu and CJ Niu and YL Zhao and XC Tian and P Hu and HA Wu and LQ Mai, JOURNAL OF THE AMERICAN CHEMICAL SOCIETY, 135, 18176-18182 (2013).

DOI: 10.1021/ja409027s

Graphene scrolls have been widely investigated for applications in electronics, sensors, energy storage, etc. However, graphene scrolls with tens of micrometers in length and with other materials in their cavities have not been obtained. Here nanowire templated semihollow bicontinuous graphene scroll architecture is designed and constructed through "oriented assembly" and "self-scroll" strategy. These obtained nanowire templated graphene scrolls can achieve over 30 mu m in length with interior cavities between the nanowire and scroll. It is demonstrated through experiments and molecular dynamic simulations that the semihollow bicontinuous structure construction processes depend on the systemic energy, the curvature of nanowires, and the reaction time. Lithium batteries based on V3O7 nanowire templated graphene scrolls (VGSs) exhibit an optimal performance with specific capacity of 321 mAh/g at 100 mA/g and 87.3% capacity retention after 400 cycles at 2000 mA/g. The VGS also shows a high conductivity of 1056 S/m and high capacity of 162 mAh/g at a large density of 3000 mA/g with only 5 wt % graphene added which are 27 and 4.5 times as high as those of V3O7 nanowires, respectively. A supercapacitor made of MnO2 nanowire templated graphene scrolls (MGSs) also shows a high capacity of 317 F/g at 1A/g, which is over 1.5 times than that of MnO2 nanowires without graphene scrolls. These excellent energy storage capacities and cycling performance are attributed to the unique structure of the nanowire templated graphene scroll, which provides continuous electron and ion transfer channels and space for free volume expansion of nanowires during cycling. This strategy and understanding can be used to synthesize other nanowire templated graphene scroll architectures, which can be extended to other fabrication processes and fields.

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