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WIREs Energy Environ.
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Nanostructured electrode materials for electrochemical energy storage and conversion

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Manipulation of matter at the nanoscale is a way forward to move beyond our current choices in electrochemical energy storage and conversion technologies with promise of higher efficiency, environmental benignity, and cost‐effectiveness. Electrochemical processes being basically surface phenomena, tailored multifunctional nanoarchitecturing can lead to improvements in terms of electronic and ionic conductivities, diffusion and mass transport, and electron transfer and electrocatalysis. The nanoscale is also a domain in which queer properties surface: those associated with conversion electrodes, ceramic particles enhancing the conductivity of polymer electrolytes, and transition metal oxide powders catalyzing fuel cell reactions, to cite a few. Although this review attempts to present a bird's eye view of the vast literature that has accumulated in this rather infant field, it also lists a few representative studies that establish the beneficial effects of going ‘nano’. Investigations on nanostructuring and use of nanoparticles and nanoarchitectures related to lithium‐ion batteries (active materials and electrolytes), supercapacitors (electrical double‐layer capacitors, supercapacitors based on pseudo‐capacitance, and hybrid supercapacitors), and fuel cells (electrocatalysts, membranes and hydrogen storage materials) are highlighted. This article is categorized under: Fuel Cells and Hydrogen > Science and Materials Energy Infrastructure > Science and Materials Energy Research & Innovation > Science and Materials
| Electrochemical capacitive performances of PANI/CNTA composite. (a) Cyclic voltammograms at different scan rates; (b) charge–discharge curves at different current densities; (c) specific capacitance of PANI on CNTA, PANI/CNTA (based on the mass of PANI on CNTA and PANI/CNTA composite respectively), and original CNTA versus discharge current density; and (d) charge–discharge cycle at a current 10 mA within the potential window –0.2 to 0.7 V.
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| Cycling behavior of CoO in 1 M LiPF6‐EC/DMC (0.02–3.00 V; 55 C). Inset: Brightfield transmission electron microscope image of the active material surface after first lithiation showing the inorganic and organic layers.
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| (a, b) Rate capability and voltage profiles of lithium/silicon nanotubes coin cells (0.0–1.5 V). Cells for (a) used a fixed 1 C rate during all the discharge cycles and were tested with increasing rates from 0.2 to 5 C (15 A/g) during the charge cycles. Cells for (b) were cycled at a rate of 1C between 0 and 1.5 V and voltage profiles were plotted after the secondnd, fortieth, and eightieth cycles. (c, d) Rate capability and cycle life performance of silicon nanotubes/LiCoO2 pouch cells (2.75–4.30 V) to 200 cycles. Rate was increased from 0.2 to 5 C with the same rates during charge and discharge (1C = 3 A/g). C rate for the cycle test in (d) was 1 C.
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| Cycling behavior of nanotin, unopened, opened but unfilled, and tin‐filled carbon nanotubes. Cycling behavior at (a) 0.1 C and (b) 0.3 C rates w.r.t. 372 mAh/g for graphite.
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| Comparison of the energy densities and power densities of batteries, capacitors, and fuel cells.
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| Volumetric hydrogen uptake for graphene (diamonds), (6,6) carbon nanotubes (squares), pillared material (triangles), and lithium‐doped pillared (stars) at (a) 77 K and (b) 300 K. Lithium‐doped pillared (stars) at (a) 77 K and (b) 300 K.
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| (a) Snapshot from simulations of pure pillared structure at 77 K and 3 bar. (b) Snapshot from simulations of lithium‐doped pillared structure at 77 K and 3 bar. Hydrogen molecules are represented in green while lithium atoms are in purple.
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| A comparison of the volumetric and gravimetric energy densities of various hydrogen storage materials.
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| Platinum‐coated nanowhisker supports. (a) Plane view, (b) 45° view (at a higher magnification), and (c) the nanostructure sandwiched between the PEM and gas‐diffusion layer.
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| Transmission electron microscope images of Pt/C (a) before and (b) after 7000 potential cycles of AST, and for Pt–Au/C (c) before and (d) after 10000 potential cycles of AST.
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Energy Research & Innovation > Science and Materials
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Fuel Cells and Hydrogen > Science and Materials

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