Periodic Reporting for period 1 - 3D-GATED (Three-Dimensional Graphene Architectures as Templates for Electrochemical Devices)
Reporting period: 2015-05-15 to 2017-05-14
3-Dimensional Graphene Architectures as Templates for Electrochemical Devices (3D-GATED), targeted providing new materials platforms for the continuing miniaturization of these electrochemical energy devices. The increasing power demands along with the focus on weight reduction of consumer electronics such as smartphones, portable gaming consoles, and smartwatches, leads to a constant need for better utilization of the volume and weight available for the electronics powering these devices. Additive manufacturing, or 3D printing, has been developing in capabilities exceptionally rapidly over the past decade, and now provides a tool for the production of scaffolds on the macro- to nano- scale with customisable densities and structures. 3D-GATED aimed to take one of the most promising energy storage materials in graphene and grow this extremely light weight material on designer, 3D printed architectures. These 3D, freestanding, graphene architectures then allow for the incorporation of materials to add device specificity (super-capacitor, battery, or water splitting catalyst). Layered transition metal dichalcogenides (LTMDs) are an ideal material for coupling to these graphene architectures as they strongly interact and bind with graphene along the basal plane, have a high surface area, can be highly conductive or catalytically active (depending on their crystal structure), and are both environmentally abundant and friendly.
Through the combination of additive manufacturing, graphene synthesis, LTMD synthesis, and electrochemical device fabrication, 3D-GATED aimed to provide a new materials platform for the formation of high power and energy electrochemical devices that can be tailored, either through structural design or LTMD additive type for specific application requirements. Throughout 3D-GATED there was significant transfer of knowledge, with training gained in LTMD synthesis and characterisation, and photo- and electro-catalytic electrochemistry, and training given in graphene synthesis, super-capacitance device building and characterisation, and carbon composite formation.
The Mattevi Research Group and Imperial College London was an ideal place to conduct 3D-GATED as it provided excellent support for this multidisciplinary project, whilst also providing excellent personal and career development opportunities. The Postdoctoral development Centre at Imperial College London further facilitated these development opportunities with an array of courses to develop research and management skills.
At the conclusion of 3D-GATED, 3D tailorable graphene architectures, 3D LTMD architecutres, and 3D graphene/LTMD architectures have been grown directly on additive manufactured scaffolds. The produced materials have shown great promise as super-capacitor devices and as water-splitting catalyst electrodes. Full device testing and optimisation is currently ongoing to test these materials in real world scenarios.
In Summary, 3D-GATED has developed new protocols for the growth of Graphene and LTMDs directly on additive manufacture architectures, probed the electro- and photo-catalytic properties of the composites, build supercapacitor devices, and established strong collaborations to build and continue to exploit these results.
Throughout 3D-GATED the outcomes have been disseminated through social media (@3DGATED), conference attendance, and journal publications. Specifically, 3 peer reviewed journal publications have been disseminated based on the work carried out during 3D-GATED. Further to this, publications on 3D printing LTMDs, 3D Graphene growth, and 3D LTMD growth are all in preparation or submitted for dissemination. Further publications on collaborations build through 3D-GATED are also forthcoming. I have presented 3D-GATED at the EMRS meeting in Lille 2016 with a presentation entitled ""3D CVD graphene monoliths by additive manufacturing"" which was well recieved. Dissemination will continue at upcoming conferences, Carbon 2017 (Melbourne, Australia), and Chem2DMater (Strasbourg, France)"