Biomass waste inspired highly porous carbon for high performance lithium/sulfur batteries

Yan Zhao, Jun Ren, Taizhe Tan, Moulay Rachid Babaa, Zhumabay Bakenov, Ning Liu, Yongguang Zhang

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

19 Citations (Scopus)


The synthesis of highly porous carbon (HPC) materials from poplar catkin by KOH chemical activation and hydrothermal carbonization as a conductive additive to a lithium-sulfur cathode is reported. Elemental sulfur was composited with as-prepared HPC through a melt diffusion method to form a S/HPC nanocomposite. Structure and morphology characterization revealed a hierarchically sponge-like structure of HPC with high pore volume (0.62 cm3·g−1) and large specific surface area (1261.7 m2·g−1). When tested in Li/S batteries, the resulting compound demonstrated excellent cycling stability, delivering a second-specific capacity of 1154 mAh·g−1 as well as presenting 74% retention of value after 100 cycles at 0.1 C. Therefore, the porous structure of HPC plays an important role in enhancing electrochemical properties, which provides conditions for effective charge transfer and effective trapping of soluble polysulfide intermediates, and remarkably improves the electrochemical performance of S/HPC composite cathodes.

Original languageEnglish
Article number260
Issue number9
Publication statusPublished - Sep 6 2017
Externally publishedYes


  • Cathode
  • Lithium/sulfur battery
  • Poplar catkin
  • Sulfur/highly porous carbon composite

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Materials Science(all)
  • Chemical Engineering(all)

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