New Supercapacitor with Double Capacity
The ability to store energy is immensely important for many systems, including our mobile electronics and electric vehicles. For years batteries have been the go-to solution, but they lack certain useful properties, such as fast charge and discharge rates, which capacitors have, but those lack the large energy densities of batteries. Researchers at the University of California, Riverside have recently developed a new supercapacitor that could help achieve the best of both worlds for our various electronics.
Capacitors store energy by charging separated electrodes, almost like how you can hold onto a static charge for some time, before discharging and shocking something very quickly, but with little energy. Batteries can store great amounts of energy by means of chemical reactions, which take time happen, and that slows the rate at which the energy can be used or stored. Supercapacitors exist in the middle though, with high energy densities and fast charging and discharging. This new supercapacitor is based on transition metal oxide modified nanocarbon graphene foam electrodes, which more or less translates to a graphene foam with carbon nanotubes attached to it and, in this case, ruthenium oxide nanoparticles anchored to it all. The result is an electrode with great stability, surface area, and energy density.
When tested, the new electrodes were able to store more than twice what commercially available supercapacitors can store, and survived over 8000 charge-discharge cycles, without any performance loss.