An overview of carbon materials for flexible electrochemical capacitors.

PMID 23934430


Under the background of the quick development of lightweight, flexible, and wearable electronic devices in our society, a flexible and highly efficient energy management strategy is needed for their counterpart energy-storage systems. Among them, flexible electrochemical capacitors (ECs) have been considered as one of the most promising candidates because of their significant advantages in power and energy densities, and unique properties of being flexible, lightweight, low-cost, and environmentally friendly compared with current energy storage devices. In a common EC, carbon materials play an irreplaceable and principal role in its energy-storage performance. Up till now, most progress towards flexible ECs technologies has mostly benefited from the continuous development of carbon materials. As a result, in view of the dual remarkable highlights of ECs and carbon materials, a summary of recent research progress on carbon-based flexible EC electrode materials is presented in this review, including carbon fiber (CF, consisting of carbon microfiber-CMF and carbon nanofiber-CNF) networks, carbon nanotube (CNT) and graphene coatings, CNT and/or graphene papers (or films), and freestanding three-dimensional (3D) flexible carbon-based macroscopic architectures. Furthermore, some promising carbon materials for great potential applications in flexible ECs are introduced. Finally, the trends and challenges in the development of carbon-based electrode materials for flexible ECs and their smart applications are analyzed.