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Performance, stability and operation voltage optimization of screen-printed aqueous supercapacitors

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Original languageEnglish
Article number46001
JournalScientific Reports
Volume7
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 6 Apr 2017
Publication typeA1 Journal article-refereed

Abstract

Harvesting micropower energy from the ambient environment requires an intermediate energy storage, for which printed aqueous supercapacitors are well suited due to their low cost and environmental friendliness. In this work, a systematic study of a large set of devices is used to investigate the effect of process variability and operating voltage on the performance and stability of screen printed aqueous supercapacitors. The current collectors and active layers are printed with graphite and activated carbon inks, respectively, and aqueous NaCl used as the electrolyte. The devices are characterized through galvanostatic discharge measurements for quantitative determination of capacitance and equivalent series resistance (ESR), as well as impedance spectroscopy for a detailed study of the factors contributing to ESR. The capacitances are 200–360 mF and the ESRs 7.9–12.7 Ω, depending on the layer thicknesses. The ESR is found to be dominated by the resistance of the graphite current collectors and is compatible with applications in low-power distributed electronics. The effects of different operating voltages on the capacitance, leakage and aging rate of the supercapacitors are tested, and 1.0 V found to be the optimal choice for using the devices in energy harvesting applications.

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