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A Bamboo-Inspired Nanostructure Design for Flexible, Foldable, and Twistable Energy Storage Devices

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posted on 2015-06-10, 00:00 authored by Yongming Sun, Ryan B. Sills, Xianluo Hu, Zhi Wei Seh, Xu Xiao, Henghui Xu, Wei Luo, Huanyu Jin, Ying Xin, Tianqi Li, Zhaoliang Zhang, Jun Zhou, Wei Cai, Yunhui Huang, Yi Cui
Flexible energy storage devices are critical components for emerging flexible electronics. Electrode design is key in the development of all-solid-state supercapacitors with superior electrochemical performances and mechanical durability. Herein, we propose a bamboo-like graphitic carbon nanofiber with a well-balanced macro-, meso-, and microporosity, enabling excellent mechanical flexibility, foldability, and electrochemical performances. Our design is inspired by the structure of bamboos, where a periodic distribution of interior holes along the length and graded pore structure at the cross section not only enhance their stability under different mechanical deformation conditions but also provide a high surface area accessible to the electrolyte and low ion-transport resistance. The prepared nanofiber network electrode recovers its initial state easily after 3-folded manipulation. The mechanically robust membrane is explored as a free-standing electrode for a flexible all-solid-state supercapacitor. Without the need for extra support, the volumetric energy and power densities based on the whole device are greatly improved compared to the state-of-the-art devices. Even under continuous dynamic operations of forceful bending (90°) and twisting (180°), the as-designed device still exhibits stable electrochemical performances with 100% capacitance retention. Such a unique supercapacitor holds great promise for high-performance flexible electronics.

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