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Synthesis and microstructural characterization of manganese oxide electrodes for application as electrochemical supercapacitors Open Access


Other title
Structural characterization
Electrochemical capacitors
Manganese oxide
Type of item
Degree grantor
University of Alberta
Author or creator
Babakhani, Banafsheh
Supervisor and department
Ivey, Douglas G. (Chemical and Materials Engineering)
Examining committee member and department
Ivey, Douglas G. (Chemical and Materials Engineering)
Yeung, Tony (Chemical and Materials Enginnering)
Liu, Qi (Chemical and Materials Enginnering)
Bergens, Steven H. (Chemistry)
Choi, Phillip (Chemical and Materials Enginnering)
Hill, Josephine (Chemical and Petroleum Engineering- Calgary)
Department of Chemical and Materials Engineering

Date accepted
Graduation date
Doctor of Philosophy
Degree level
The aim of this thesis work was to synthesize Mn-based oxide electrodes with high surface area structures by anodic electrodeposition for application as electrochemical capacitors. Rod-like structures provide large surface areas leading to high specific capacitances. Since templated electrosynthesis of rods is not easy to use in practical applications, it is more desirable to form rod-like structures without using any templates. In this work, Mn oxide electrodes with rod-like structures (~1.5 µm in diameter) were synthesized from a solution of 0.01 M Mn acetate under galvanostatic control without any templates, on Au coated Si substrates. The electrochemical properties of the synthesized nanocrystalline electrodes were investigated to determine the effect of morphology, chemistry and crystal structure on the corresponding electrochemical behavior of Mn oxide electrodes. Mn oxides prepared at different current densities showed a defective antifluorite-type crystal structure. The rod-like Mn oxide electrodes synthesized at low current densities (5 mAcm−2) exhibited a high specific capacitance due to their large surface areas. Also, specific capacity retention after 250 cycles in an aqueous solution of 0.5 M Na2SO4 at 100 mVs−1 was about 78% of the initial capacity (203 Fg−1). To improve the electrochemical capacitive behavior of Mn oxide electrodes, a sequential approach and a one–step method were adopted to synthesize Mn oxide/PEDOT electrodes through anodic deposition on Au coated Si substrates from aqueous solutions. In the former case, free standing Mn oxide rods (about 10 µm long and less than 1.5 µm in diameter) were first synthesized, then coated by electro–polymerization of a conducting polymer (PEDOT) giving coaxial rods. The one–step, co–electrodeposition method produced agglomerated Mn oxide/PEDOT particles. The electrochemical behavior of the deposits depended on the morphology and crystal structure of the fabricated electrodes, which were affected by the composition and pH of the electrolyte, temperature, current density and polymer deposition time. Mn oxide/PEDOT coaxial core/shell rods consisted of MnO2 with an antifluorite–type structure coated with amorphous PEDOT. The Mn oxide/PEDOT coaxial core/shell electrodes prepared by the sequential method showed significantly better specific capacity and redox performance properties relative to both uncoated Mn oxide rods and co–electrodeposited Mn oxide/PEDOT electrodes. The best specific capacitance for Mn oxide/PEDOT rods produced sequentially was ~295 F g−1 with ~92% retention after 250 cycles in 0.5 M Na2SO4 at 100 mV s−1. To further improve the electrochemical capacitive behavior of Mn oxide electrodes, Co-doped and Fe-doped Mn oxide electrodes with a rod-like morphology and antifluorite-type crystal structure were synthesized by anodic electrodeposition, on Au coated Si substrates, from dilute solutions of Mn acetate and Co sulphate and Mn acetate and Fe chloride. Also, Mn-Co oxide/PEDOT coaxial core/shell rods were synthesized by applying a shell of PEDOT on Mn-Co oxide electrodes. Mn-Co oxide/PEDOT electrodes consisted of MnO2, with partial Co2+ and Co3+ ion substitution for Mn4+, and amorphous PEDOT. Mn-Fe oxide electrodes consisted of MnO2, with partial Fe2+ and Fe3+ ion substitution for Mn4+. Electrochemical analysis showed that the capacitance values for all deposits increased with increasing scan rate to 100 mVs−1, and then decreased after 100 mVs−1. The Mn-Co oxide/PEDOT electrodes showed improved specific capacity and electrochemical cyclability relative to uncoated Mn-Co oxides and Mn-Fe oxides. Mn-Co oxide/PEDOT electrodes with rod-like structures had high capacitances (up to 310 Fg−1) at a scan rate of 100 mVs-1 and maintained their capacitance after 500 cycles in 0.5 M Na2SO4 (91% retention). Capacitance reduction for the deposits was mainly due to the loss of Mn ions by dissolution in the electrolyte solution. To better understand the nucleation and growth mechanisms of Mn oxide electrodes, the effects of supersaturation ratio on the morphology and crystal structure of electrodeposited Mn oxide were studied. By changing deposition parameters, including deposition current density, electrolyte composition, pH and temperature, a series of nanocrystalline Mn oxide electrodes with various morphologies (continuous coatings, rod–like structures, aggregated rods and thin sheets) and an antifluorite–type crystal structure was obtained. Mn oxide thin sheets showed instantaneous nucleation and single crystalline growth; rods had a mix of instantaneous/progressive nucleation and polycrystalline growth and continuous coatings formed by progressive nucleation and polycrystalline growth. Electrochemical analysis revealed the best capacitance behaviour obtained for Mn oxide thin sheets followed by Mn oxide rods, with dimensions on the microscale, and then continuous coatings. The highest specific capacitance (~230 Fg−1) and capacitance retention rates (~88%) were obtained for Mn oxide thin sheets after 250 cycles in 0.5 M Na2SO4 at 20 mVs−1.
This thesis is made available by the University of Alberta Libraries with permission of the copyright owner solely for the purpose of private, scholarly or scientific research. This thesis, or any portion thereof, may not otherwise be copied or reproduced without the written consent of the copyright owner, except to the extent permitted by Canadian copyright law.
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