Nanoarchitectured graphene/CNT@porous carbon with extraordinary electrical conductivity and interconnected micro/mesopores for lithium-sulfur batteries

Hong Jie Peng, Jia Qi Huang, Meng Qiang Zhao, Qiang Zhang, Xin Bing Cheng, Xin Yan Liu, Wei Zhong Qian, Fei Wei

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

521 Scopus citations


The sp2-hybridized nanocarbon (e.g., carbon nanotubes (CNTs) and graphene) exhibits extraordinary mechanical strength and electrical conductivity but limited external accessible surface area and a small amount of pores, while nanostructured porous carbon affords a huge surface area and abundant pore structures but very poor electrical conductance. Herein the rational hybridization of the sp2 nanocarbon and nanostructured porous carbon into hierarchical all-carbon nanoarchitectures is demonstrated, with full inherited advantages of the component materials. The sp2 graphene/CNT interlinked networks give the composites good electrical conductivity and a robust framework, while the meso-/microporous carbon and the interlamellar compartment between the opposite graphene accommodate sulfur and polysulfides. The strong confinement induced by micro-/mesopores of all-carbon nanoarchitectures renders the transformation of S8 crystal into amorphous cyclo-S8 molecular clusters, restraining the shuttle phenomenon for high capacity retention of a lithium-sulfur cell. Therefore, the composite cathode with an ultrahigh specific capacity of 1121 mAh g-1 at 0.5 C, a favorable high-rate capability of 809 mAh g-1 at 10 C, a very low capacity decay of 0.12% per cycle, and an impressive cycling stability of 877 mAh g-1 after 150 cycles at 1 C. As sulfur loading increases from 50 wt% to 77 wt%, high capacities of 970, 914, and 613 mAh g-1 are still available at current densities of 0.5, 1, and 5 C, respectively. Based on the total mass of packaged devices, gravimetric energy density of GSH@APC-S//Li cell is expected to be 400 Wh kg-1 at a power density of 10 000 W kg-1, matching the level of engine driven systems.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)2772-2781
Number of pages10
JournalAdvanced Functional Materials
Issue number19
StatePublished - May 21 2014
Externally publishedYes

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • General Chemistry
  • General Materials Science
  • Condensed Matter Physics


  • carbon
  • graphene
  • hybrid materials
  • lithium-sulfur batteries
  • nanotubes


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