In this study, micro-plasma discharge is produced by applying a high electric potential between graphite and Pt electrodes in acetonitrile solvent. The electrons generated in the micro-plasma discharge collide with acetonitrile and produce H and CH2CN radicals. The radicalized graphene layer exfoliated from the graphite electrode reacts with nascent hydrogen (H) and acetonitrile (CH2CN) radicals and partially restores its aromaticity and conjugation. Raman spectra of the product confirm the synthesis of nitrogen-functionalized graphene (N-FG), which has a marginal increase in disorderness compared to that of pure graphite and remarkable dispersibility in both hydrophilic and hydrophobic solvents. The excellent fluorescence properties of N-FG confirm the presence of fluorophores such as -NH and -NC- at the radicalized graphene sites, as supported by ultraviolet-visible spectroscopy and X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy studies. The functional groups present in N-FG lead to excellent electrochemical performance, with distinct redox peaks in cyclic voltammetry and a high specific capacitance of 291 F g-1 at a scan rate of 5 mV s-1. N-FG exhibits excellent cycling stability, with a marginal reduction of specific capacitance (<10% reduction) at the end of 1000 cycles.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Renewable Energy, Sustainability and the Environment
- Materials Science(all)