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Tailoring the physicochemical properties of chitosan-derived N-doped carbon by controlling hydrothermal carbonization time for high-performance supercapacitor application

Tong, Xing, Chen, Zehong, Zhuo, Hao, Hu, Yijie, Jing, Shuangshuang, Liu, Jinchao, Zhong, Linxin
Carbohydrate polymers 2019 v.207 pp. 764-774
biomass, capacitance, carbon, chitosan, energy density, hydrothermal carbonization, nitrogen content, pyrolysis, surface area, synergism
Although a few methods have been employed to fabricate N-doped porous carbons from various N-containing biomass resources, it is still a big challenge to obtain porous carbons with high supercapacitance performances. Herein, we demonstrate that aN-doped porous carbon with superior supercapacitance can be prepared from chitosan by properly controlling hydrothermal carbonization (HC). The physicochemical and supercapacitance properties of the HC-derived carbon are highly time-dependent and can be readily tailored. As compared with traditional direct pyrolysis, the proper control of HC time plays a very important role in promoting the supercapacitance performances of the N-doped carbon by increasing turbostratic structure, doped N content and active N species, specific surface area, and especially balancing micro- and mesoporosity. These synergistic effects produce a N-doped carbon with an ultrahigh specific capacitance of 406 ± 36 F g−1 in a three-electrode system, outstanding rate capability, and ultrahigh energy density (23.6 ± 3.1 W h kg−1).