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Individual Nanoporous Carbon Spheres with High Nitrogen Content from Polyacrylonitrile Nanoparticles with Sacrificial Protective Layers

By Jianan Zhang (786459), Rui Yuan (615737), Sittichai Natesakhawat (2058235), Zongyu Wang (1460374), Yepin Zhao (4220029), Jiajun Yan (489314), Siyuan Liu (696701), Jaejun Lee (1449937), Danli Luo (492688), Eric Gottlieb (1929757), Tomasz Kowalewski (1291482), Michael R. Bockstaller (1707220) and Krzysztof Matyjaszewski (1247034)


Functional nanoporous carbon spheres (NPC-S) are important for applications ranging from adsorption, catalysis, separation to energy storage, and biomedicine. The development of effective NPC-S materials has been hindered by the fusion of particles during the pyrolytic process that results in agglomerated materials with reduced activity. Herein, we present a process that enables the scalable synthesis of dispersed NPC-S materials by coating sacrificial protective layers around polyacrylonitrile nanoparticles (PAN NPs) to prevent interparticle cross-linking during carbonization. In a first step, PAN NPs are synthesized using miniemulsion polymerization, followed by grafting of 3-(triethoxysilyl)­propyl methacrylate (TESPMA) to form well-defined core–shell structured PAN@PTESPMA nanospheres. The cross-linked PTESPMA brush layer suppresses cross-linking reactions during carbonization. Uniform NPC-S exhibiting diameters of ∼100 nm, with relatively high accessible surface area (∼424 m<sup>2</sup>/g), and high nitrogen content (14.8 wt %) was obtained. When compared to a regular nanoporous carbon monolith (NPC-M), the nitrogen-doped NPC-S demonstrated better performance for CO<sub>2</sub> capture with a higher CO<sub>2</sub>/N<sub>2</sub> selectivity, an increased efficiency in catalytic oxygen reduction reactions, as well as improved electrochemical capacitive behavior. This miniemulsion polymerization-based strategy for the preparation of functional PAN NPs provides a new, facile approach to prepare high-performance porous carbon spheres for diverse applications

Topics: Medicine, Biotechnology, Immunology, Developmental Biology, Environmental Sciences not elsewhere classified, Biological Sciences not elsewhere classified, Chemical Sciences not elsewhere classified, Individual Nanoporous Carbon Spheres, oxygen reduction reactions, NPC-M, nanoporous carbon monolith, electrochemical capacitive behavior, carbonization, cross-linked PTESPMA brush layer, cross-linking, CO, PAN NPs, application, NPC-S materials, Layers Functional nanoporous carbon spheres, miniemulsion polymerization-based strategy
Year: 2017
DOI identifier: 10.1021/acsami.7b11910.s001
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Provided by: FigShare
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