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Generalized 3D Printing of Graphene-Based Mixed-Dimensional Hybrid Aerogels

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posted on 03.04.2018 by Xingwei Tang, Han Zhou, Zuocheng Cai, Dongdong Cheng, Peisheng He, Peiwen Xie, Di Zhang, Tongxiang Fan
Graphene-based mixed-dimensional materials hybridization is important for a myriad of applications. However, conventional manufacturing techniques face critical challenges in producing arbitrary geometries with programmable features, continuous interior networks, and multimaterials homogeneity. Here we propose a generalized three-dimensional (3D) printing methodology for graphene aerogels and graphene-based mixed-dimensional (2D + nD, where n is 0, 1, or 2) hybrid aerogels with complex architectures, by the development of hybrid inks and printing schemes to enable mix-dimensional hybrids printability, overcoming the limitations of multicomponents inhomogeneity and harsh post-treatments for additives removal. Importantly, nonplanar designed geometries are also demonstrated by shape-conformable printing on curved surfaces. We further demonstrate the 3D-printed hybrid aerogels as ultrathick electrodes in a symmetric compression tolerant microsupercapacitor, exhibiting quasi-proportionally enhanced areal capacitances at high levels of mass loading. The excellent performance is attributed to the sufficient ion- and electron-transport paths provided by the 3D-printed highly interconnected networks. The encouraging finding indicates tremendous potentials for practical energy storage applications. As a proof of concept, this general strategy provides avenues for various next-generation complex-shaped hybrid architectures from microscale to macroscale, for example, seawater desalination devices, electromagnetic shielding systems, and so forth.