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Ultra-high-rate pseudocapacitive energy storage in two-dimensional transition metal carbides


The use of fast surface redox storage (pseudocapacitive) mechanisms can enable devices that store much more energy than electrical double-layer capacitors (EDLCs) and, unlike batteries, can do so quite rapidly. Yet, few pseudocapacitive transition metal oxides can provide a high power capability due to their low intrinsic electronic and ionic conductivity. Here we demonstrate that two-dimensional transition metal carbides (MXenes) can operate at rates exceeding those of conventional EDLCs, but still provide higher volumetric and areal capacitance than carbon, electrically conducting polymers or transition metal oxides. We applied two distinct designs for MXene electrode architectures with improved ion accessibility to redox-active sites. A macroporous Ti3C2Tx MXene film delivered up to 210 F g−1 at scan rates of 10 V s−1, surpassing the best carbon supercapacitors known. In contrast, we show that MXene hydrogels are able to deliver volumetric capacitance of 1,500 F cm−3 reaching the previously unmatched volumetric performance of RuO2.

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Figure 1: MXene electrodes.
Figure 2: Electrochemical performance of planar MXene electrodes.
Figure 3: Electrochemical performance of macroporous Ti3C2Tx electrodes.


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We thank C.(E.) Ren for help with material synthesis. XRD, SEM and TEM investigations were performed at the Core Research Facilities (CRF) at Drexel University. Y.G., M.R.L. and M.-Q.Z. were supported by the Fluid Interface Reactions, Structures and Transport (FIRST) Center, an Energy Frontier Research Center funded by the US Department of Energy, Office of Science, and Office of Basic Energy Sciences. S.K. was supported by the US National Science Foundation under grant number DMR-1310245. Z.-F. Lin was supported by China Scholarship Council (No. 201304490006). P.S. and P.-L.T. thank the ANR (LABEX STAEX) and RS2E for financial support. M.L. and N.S. acknowledge funding from the Binational Science Foundation (BSF) USA-Israel via Research Grant Agreement 2014083/2016.

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M.R.L. and Y.G. planned the study. S.K., M.R.L., Z.L. and N.S. conducted electrochemical testing. Z.L. and S.K. performed XRD and SEM analysis. M.-Q.Z., Z.L. and J.H. synthesized MXenes and fabricated electrodes. M.-Q.Z. performed TEM analysis. Y.G., P.S., M.R.L., M.D.L., P.-L.T. and M.W.B. supervised the research and discussed the results.

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Correspondence to Patrice Simon or Yury Gogotsi.

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The authors declare no competing financial interests.

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Lukatskaya, M., Kota, S., Lin, Z. et al. Ultra-high-rate pseudocapacitive energy storage in two-dimensional transition metal carbides. Nat Energy 2, 17105 (2017).

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