Advancing Novel Energy Storage Materials to the Marketplace
Prof. Ramesh Jasti has received a Boston University Ignition Award to investigate carbon nanohoops as advanced energy storage materials. The winning proposal was developed in collaboration with 2nd year graduate student, Evan Darzi, in the Jasti Group. Through this award, they aim to advance their research to commercialization, possibly as a start-up company.
Porous carbon nanostructures have shown great promise as energy storage materials for high performance batteries and capacitors. However, current production processes are very crude and result in structurally ill-defined and heterogeneous materials. The Jasti Group has developed the synthesis of the smallest possible slice of a carbon nanotube (termed “carbon nanohoops”), with various diameters and complete uniformity. Importantly, these structures self-assemble in the solid-state to generate tubular materials that have long-range ordered channels, reminiscent of a carbon nanotube. This configuration renders them ideal as potential carbon energy storage materials, with other possible long-range applications in hydrogen storage, CO2 sequestration, and nanofiltration. In this award, the Jasti Group will explore the effect the hoop diameter and crystallinity have on charge capacitance, discharge rates, and energy storage systems. At the same time, they will develop a “flow” system for continuous synthesis of these carbon nanohoops. The work will test the hypothesis that these materials will outperform currently available porous carbon materials, as well as commercially utilized capacitors and batteries. These technical advances would enable large-scale production of carbon nanohoops and position the technology as commercially attractive for batteries and capacitors.