Researchers from Lawrence Livermore (LLNL) developed new supercapacitor electrodes made from modified graphene aerogels. Those electrodes feature high surface area, good electrical conductivity, chemical inertness and long-term cycling stability.
The researchers report that the graphene aerogel can improve the performance of commercial carbon-based (carbon black and binder materials) supercapacitor electrodes by more than 100%. The graphene aerogel electrodes have better density and pore size distribution, and increased conductivity.
MIT researchers discovered the crumpling graphene paper (made from graphene sheets bonded together) results in a low-cost material that is very useful for extremely stretchable supercapacitors for flexible devices.
Crumpling the graphene paper results in a "chaotic mass of folds. The researchers developed a simple supercapacitor using this material, that can easily be bent, folded, or stretched to as much as 800% of its original size. The material can be crumpled and flattened up to a 1,000 times, without a significant loss of performance.
Researchers from Seoul National University developed a one-step method to prepare a carbon material (which they call NCF) from used cigarette filters. They used the NCF to create supercapacitor electrodes - which exhibit a better rate capability and higher specific capacitance compared to conventional activated carbon. The capacitance is actually higher than N-doped graphene or N-doped CNT electrodes.
NCF is a nitrogen doped (N-doped) meso-/microporous hybrid carbon material. It is prepared via heating the filters in a nitrogen-containing atmosphere. The filters are made from mostly cellulose acetate fibers, which transform to mesopores and micropores which self-assemble into a unique pore structure.
Researchers from Rice University developed a new chemical process that is used to create a tough, ultra-light foam in any size and shape. The new foam (called GO-0.5BN) is made from two 2D materials: graphene oxide and hexagonal boron nitride (hBN) platelets.
This foam can be used as structural component in applications such as electrodes for supercapacitors and batteries and gas absorption material.
In 2013, researchers from the University of Alberta developed a new low-cost process to turn hemp bast fibers into graphene-like materials. Now the same team reports that those hemp fibers may be as efficient as graphene for supercapacitor electrodes, or even better. Those electrodes are made from bio waste in a simple process, and are much cheaper than graphene based electrodes.
Those fibers come from the inner bark of the hemp plant, which are often discarded. Hemp is a used in Canada to make clothing, construction materials and other products. The researchers explain that to create those fibers, they first had to really understand the structure of the plant and then tune their process which involved heating it for 24 hours at a 350 degrees Fahrenheit, and then blasting it with more intense heat, after which it exfoliates into carbon nanosheets.
Researchers from the UCLA developed a new graphene-based material that can significantly enhance the energy density of supercapacitors - in fact making them as good as lead acid batteries.
They call the new material holey graphene framework. It is a 3D material that has tiny holes in it. The holey graphene features superior electrical conductivity, exceptional mechanical flexibility and unique hierarchical porosity. This enabled the researchers to create a capacitor that has an unparalleled energy densities of 35 watt hours per kilogram (49 watt hours per liter), which is up to 10 times higher than current commercial supercapacitors.
In December 2013, Graphene Nanochem, in cooperation with the National Innovation Agency of Malaysia agreed to launch Malaysia's national graphene hub, with hopes that Malaysia will turn into a global graphene innovation hub. Now the Malaysian government has launched the National Graphene Action Plan (NGAP) 2020, a "strategic and calculated venture on graphene".
The NGAP 2020 outlined five potential industries that could best benefit from graphene — rubber additives, Li-ion battery anode/ultra-capacitors, conductive inks, nanofluids and plastic additives. The government says that according to their studies, by 2020 Malaysia could capture a $20 million nanofluids market, a $90 million plastic market and a $4.4 billion rubber market.