3 years ago

One-Step Cathodic and Anodic Synthesis of Hydrophilic Carbon Nanomaterials

One-Step Cathodic and Anodic Synthesis of Hydrophilic Carbon Nanomaterials
Pedro B. Tavares, Ana M. Ferraria, Luís F. V. Ferreira, Diana P. Ferreira, Ana M. Botelho do Rego, Romeu Videira, Andreia D. Veloso, M. Cristina Oliveira, Ana S. Viana
It was demonstrated that the galvanostatic polarization of graphite electrodes in a cell with two separated compartments generates simultaneously and straightforwardly, without further separation and functionalization, two distinct sets of hydrophilic carbon nanomaterials [electrogenerated hydrophilic carbon (EHC)], in the anodic and cathodic compartments, respectively. The synthesized products comprise an amorphous carbonaceous material with aromatic sp2 carbon clusters, differing mainly in their oxidation degree. Surprisingly, it was found that nitrogen is incorporated in the carbon-based material during the electrolysis, which is provided by the N2 gas present in the air and/or aqueous medium. This phenomenon is explained on the basis that very reactive carbonaceous species are formed during the electrodes polarization, owing to an anomalous high electric field generated along the galvanostatic polarization. In addition, it was also evidenced that ECH materials display a negative charge, counterbalanced by sodium ions and unique optical properties, exhibiting deep ultraviolet emission (ca. 4.1 eV), as well as blue luminescence. It is foreseen that these carbon materials will have important repercussions in optoelectronics devices, energy technology (supercapacitors, batteries, and fuel cells), and biomedicine. Two in one: Two distinct sets of amorphous carbonaceous material with aromatic sp2 carbon clusters are generated simultaneously and separately in a two-compartment electrochemical cell in aqueous medium. It is demonstrated that both carbon-based materials are negatively charged and that incorporation of nitrogen from N2 occurs. These materials display unique optical properties, exhibiting deep ultraviolet emission, in addition to blue luminescence.

Publisher URL: http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/resolve/doi

DOI: 10.1002/celc.201700386

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