Synthesis of carbon nanotubes@mesoporous carbon core-shell structured electrocatalysts via a molecule-mediated interfacial co-assembly strategy

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Zhu, Xiaohang
Xia, Yuan
Zhang, Xingmiao
Al-Khalaf, Areej Abdulkareem
Zhao, Tiancong
Xu, Jixue
Peng, Liang
Hozzein, Wael N
Li, Wei
Zhao, Dongyuan
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2019
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Abstract

Core–shell structured mesoporous materials have received great interest for various applications. However, it remains a great challenge to coat mesoporous carbon shells with large accessible pores and short tubular channels due to the difficulty in controlling the interfacial interactions during the co-assembly process. Herein, uniform carbon nanotubes@mesoporous N-doped carbon (CNTs@mesoNC) core–shell structured nanofibers are synthesized by a molecule-mediated interfacial co-assembly strategy. The interaction between F127 and polydopamine can be well mediated by 1,3,5-trimethyl benzene molecules, thus enabling the formation of composited micelles and ensuring the interfacial co-assembly on the CNT surface. Such a strategy is very simple and versatile for synthesis of various mesoporous carbon-based core–shell structures. The obtained CNTs@mesoNC nanofibers possess highly conductive CNT cores, ultrathin shell thickness (∼28 nm), perpendicular mesopores (∼6.9 nm) in the shell, high surface area (∼768 m2 g−1), and abundant N-doping sites (6.9 at%), which distinguish them from bulk mesoporous carbons with small pore sizes. As a result, the nanofibers exhibit superior electrocatalytic performance toward the oxygen reduction reaction in alkaline media. This method paves a way to design functional core–shell materials with uniform mesoporous carbon shells for potential applications in adsorption, catalysis and energy fields.

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Journal of Materials Chemistry A
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7
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15
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Macromolecular and materials chemistry
Materials engineering
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Science & Technology
Physical Sciences
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Chemistry, Physical
Energy & Fuels
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Zhu, X; Xia, Y; Zhang, X; Al-Khalaf, AA; Zhao, T; Xu, J; Peng, L; Hozzein, WN; Li, W; Zhao, D, Synthesis of carbon nanotubes@mesoporous carbon core-shell structured electrocatalysts via a molecule-mediated interfacial co-assembly strategy, Journal of Materials Chemistry A, 2019, 7 (15), pp. 8975-8983
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