Thin amorphous manganese oxide layers with a thickness of 3-5 nm are electrodeposited on a carbon nanotube (CNT) film substrate that has a three-dimensional nanoporous structure (denoted as MnO2/CNT electrode). For the purpose of comparison, manganese oxide films are also electrodeposited on a flat Pt-coated Si wafer substrate (denoted as MnO2 film electrode). The pseudocapacitive properties of the MnO2 film and MnO2/CNT electrodes are examined in both aqueous electrolyte (1.0 M KCl) and non-aqueous organic electrolyte (1.0 M LiClO4 in propylene carbonate). While both types of electrode show pseudocapacitive behaviour in the aqueous electrolyte, only the MnO2/CNT electrode does so in the organic electrolyte, due to its high oxide/electrolyte interfacial area and improved electron conduction through the CNT substrate. Compared with the MnO2 film electrode, the MnO2/CNT electrode shows a much higher specific capacitance and better high-rate capability, regardless of the electrolyte used. Use of the organic electrolyte results in a ∼6 times higher specific energy compared with that obtained with the aqueous electrolyte, while maintaining a similar specific power. The construction of a three-dimensional nanoporous network structure consisting of a thin oxide layer on a CNT film substrate at the nm scale and the use of an organic electrolyte are promising approaches to improving the specific energy of supercapacitors.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Renewable Energy, Sustainability and the Environment
- Energy Engineering and Power Technology
- Physical and Theoretical Chemistry
- Electrical and Electronic Engineering