284188 Promise and Challenges of Materials for Electrochemical Capacitors

Thursday, November 1, 2012: 9:30 AM
410 (Convention Center )
Prashant Kumta, Bioengineering, University of Pittsburgh, Pittsburgh, PA

Nanotechnology is a revolutionary area that has impacted several areas of materials science and technology including the area of electrochemically active materials for lithium-ion batteries, electro-active catalysts for fuel cell systems, and electrochemical capacitors. The growing worldwide demand for energy makes the need for sustainable energy and power storage systems highly critical. In this regard electrochemical supercapacitors are emerging as devices of prime importance owing to their superior characteristics unparalleled by any other charge storage device. These include: high power densities at relatively high energy densities and long cycle life. Electrochemical capacitors comprise electrochemical double layer (EDLC), pseudo-capacitors, and supercapacitors. All of these systems are differentiated by their intrinsic distinct fundamental mechanisms and are all capable of delivering large bursts of charge over a very short period of time. It is due to this unique capability that electrochemical capacitors find a very important role in the growing alternative energy field. High surface area carbons, hydrated ruthenium oxide, nanostructured VOx and MnO2, high surface area and highly electronically conducting graphene, carbon nanotubes (CNTs) are among the primary materials being considered for supercapacitor applications. In recent years there has also been significant activity in transition metal non-oxide based electrochemical capacitors. This presentation will cover the fundamental principles of electrochemical capacitors and discuss the current materials of choice.  The presentation will culminate by providing insights into the challenges and promise of novel next generation materials for use in electrochemical capacitors for high power applications.

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