Cost-effective, solvothermal synthesis of heteroatom (S or N)-doped graphene developed

July 24, 2014

A research team led by group leader Yung-Eun Sung has announced that they have developed cost-effective technology to synthesize sulfur-doped and nitrogen-doped graphenes which can be applied as high performance electrodes for secondary batteries and fuel cells. Yung-Eun Sung is both a group leader at the Center for Nanoparticle Research at Institute for Basic Science* (IBS) and a professor at the Seoul National University.

This achievement has great significance with regards to the development of relative simplicity, scalablity, and cost effectiveness processes that can produce heteroatom (S or N)-doped graphenes. Moreover, these materials enhance the performance of secondary batteries and drive down the cost of producing fuel cells. This process using common laboratory reagent, sodium hydroxide (NaOH) and heteroatom-containing organic solvents as precursors. The research team was able to synthesize sulfur-doped and nitrogen-doped graphenes by using a simple, single-step solvothermal method.

These heteroatom-doped graphene exhibited high surface areas and high contents of heteroatoms.In addition, the lithium-ion batteries that had modified graphenes applied to it, exhibited a higher capacity than the theoretical capacity of graphite which was previously used in . It presented high chemical stability which resulted in no capacity degradation in charge and discharge experiments. The heteroatom-doped graphenes suggest the potential to be employed as an effective, alternative chemical material by demonstrating performance comparable to that of the expensive platinum catalyst used for the cathode of batteries. Platinum has a high profile because of its high chemical reactivity and electrocatalytic activity. However, limited resources and high expense have been stumbling blocks in its effective commercialization.

Group leader Yung-Eun Sung of the Center for Nanoparticle Research at IBS, says, "We expect that our synthetic approach will be developed to produce doped carbon materials based on other elements (e.g., florine, boron, phosphorus) which can then increase the method's potential applications in fuel cells, lithium secondary batteries, sensors, and semi-conductors."

Explore further: A noble yet simple way to synthesize new metal-free electrocatalysts for oxygen reduction reaction

More information: "Single Source Precursor-based Solvothermal Synthesis of Heteroatom-doped Graphene and Its Energy Storage and Conversion Applications", Bo Quan, Seung-Ho Yu, Dong Young Chung, Aihua Jin, Ji Hyun Park, Yung-Eun Sung & Yuanzhe Piao, Scientific Reports, Published: 10 July 2014, DOI: 10.1038/srep05639

Related Stories

Japanese team creates new lithium battery

May 20, 2014

The long life of lithium ion batteries makes them the rechargeable of choice for everything from implantable medical devices to wearable consumer electronics. But lithium ion batteries rely on liquid chemistries involving ...

Engineering researchers develop next-generation battery

July 7, 2014

(Phys.org) —A research team from the University of Alberta has used carbon nanomaterials to develop next-generation batteries capable of charging faster and lasting longer than today's standard lithium-ion batteries.

Recommended for you

Graphene made superconductive by doping with lithium atoms

September 2, 2015

(Phys.org)—A team of researchers from Germany and Canada has found a way to make graphene superconductive—by doping it with lithium atoms. In their paper they have uploaded to the preprint server arXiv, the team describes ...

For 2-D boron, it's all about that base

September 2, 2015

Rice University scientists have theoretically determined that the properties of atom-thick sheets of boron depend on where those atoms land.

0 comments

Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.