Co3O4 nanocrystals grown on graphene nanosheets for high-performance supercapacitor with excellent rate capability

  • Yunhui Qi
  • Rui Zhu
  • Jun Xie
  • Yali Luo
  • Yunfei LiuEmail author
  • Yinong LyuEmail author
Original Paper: Nano-structured materials (particles, fibers, colloids, composites, etc.)


Co3O4 nanocrystals grown on graphene nanosheets (GNSs) were synthesized through a facile microwave hydrothermal method. The morphological and crystalline changes of Co3O4 nanocrystals during the microwave hydrothermal treatment are characterized by FE-SEM and XRD. Different morphologies of Co3O4/GNSs are obtained by controlling the microwave hydrothermal temperatures and time. The particle-slice Co3O4/GNSs exhibits the specific capacitance of 736 F g−1 at a current density of 9 A g−1 and 659 F g−1 at a high current density of 32 A g−1 (~97% capacitance retention at 4.5 A g−1 and ~89% capacitance retention at 9 A g−1). Therefore, the anode material with high rate capability and excellent cycle stability could be promising for high-performance supercapacitor.

Different morphologies of Co3O4 nanocrystals grown on commercial graphene nanosheets have been successfully prepared, particle-slice Co3O4/GNSs shows high specific capacitance with excellent rate capability and long cycle stability.


  • Graphene nanosheets anchored with different morphologies of Co3O4 nanocrystals were explored for supercapacitor application.

  • Microwave hydrothermal method was used to control the morphology of Co3O4.

  • Particle-slice Co3O4/GNSs owns high rate capability and good cycle stability because of its special structure.


Co3O4 Graphene nanosheets Rate capability Supercapacitor 



This work was supported by Priority Academic Program Development (PAPD) of Jiangsu Higher Education Institutions. And the authors thank for Innovative Research Team in University (PCSIRT), IRT1146.

Compliance with ethical standards

Conflict of interest

The authors declare that they have no conflict of interest.


  1. 1.
    Winter M, Brodd RJ (2004) What are batteries, fuel cells, and supercapacitors? Chem Rev 104:4245–4269CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  2. 2.
    Simon P, Gogotsi Y (2008) Materials for electrochemical capacitors. Nat Mater 7:845–854CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  3. 3.
    Wang Y, Xia Y (2013) Recent progress in supercapacitors: from materials design to system construction. Adv Mater 25:5336–5342CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  4. 4.
    Wang G, Zhang L, Zhang J (2012) ChemInform abstract: a review of electrode materials for electrochemical supercapacitors. Cheminform 43:797–828Google Scholar
  5. 5.
    Yan J, Wang Q, Wei T, Fan Z (2014) Recent advances in design and fabrication of electrochemical supercapacitors with high energy densities. Adv Energy Mater 4:157–164Google Scholar
  6. 6.
    Yuan CZ, Gao B, Shen LF et al. (2011) Hierarchically structured carbon-based composites: Design, synthesis and their application in electrochemical capacitors. Nanoscale 3:529–545CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  7. 7.
    Tong H, Yue S, Lu L, Jin F, Han Q, Zhang X, Liu J (2017) A binder-free NiCo2O4 nanosheet/3D elastic N-doped hollow carbon nanotube sponge electrode with high volumetric and gravimetric capacitances for asymmetric supercapacitors. Nanoscale 9:16826–16835CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  8. 8.
    Wang W, Guo S, Lee I et al. (2014) Hydrous ruthenium oxide nanoparticles anchored to graphene and carbon nanotube hybrid foam for supercapacitors. Sci Rep 4:4452CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  9. 9.
    Zhou G, Wang DW, Yin LC, Li N, Li F (2012) Oxygen bridges between NiO nanosheets and graphene for improvement of lithium storage. Acs Nano 6:3214–3223CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  10. 10.
    Xu Y, Huang X, Lin Z (2012) One-step strategy to graphene/Ni(OH)2 composite hydrogels as advanced three-dimensional supercapacitor electrode materials. Nano Res 6:65–76CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  11. 11.
    Wang H, Casalongue HS, Liang Y, Dai H (2010) Ni(OH)2 nanoplates grown on graphene as advanced electrochemical pseudocapacitor materials. J Am Chem Soc 132:7472–7477CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  12. 12.
    Chen S, Zhu J, Wu X, Han Q, Wang X (2010) Graphene oxide−MnO2 nanocomposites for supercapacitors. Acs Nano 4:2822–2830CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  13. 13.
    Liang Y, Li Y, Wang H, Zhou J, Jian W (2011) Co3O4 nanocrystals on graphene as a synergistic catalyst for oxygen reduction reaction. Nat Mater 10:780–786CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  14. 14.
    Lin H, Huang Q, Wang J, Jiang J, Liu F (2016) Self-assembled graphene/polyaniline/Co3O4 ternary hybrid aerogels for supercapacitors. Electrochim Acta 191:444–451CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  15. 15.
    Fan Y, Shao G, Ma Z et al. (2015) Ultrathin nanoflakes assembled 3D hierarchical mesoporous Co3O4 nanoparticles for high-rate pseudocapacitors. Part Part Syst Char 31:1079–1083CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  16. 16.
    Cao Y, Yuan F, Yao M, Bang JH, Lee JH (2013) A new synthetic route to hollow Co3O4 octahedra for supercapacitor applications. Crystengcomm 16:826–833CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  17. 17.
    Liao Q, Li N, Jin S, Yang G, Wang C (2015) All-solid-state symmetric supercapacitor based on Co3O4 nanoparticles on vertically aligned graphene. Acs Nano 9:5310–5317CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  18. 18.
    Sun J, Li Z, Wang J et al. (2015) Ni/Bi battery based on Ni(OH)2, nanoparticles/graphene sheets and Bi2O3, rods/graphene sheets with high performance. J Alloy Compd 643:231–238CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  19. 19.
    Deng X, Li J, Zhu S et al. (2016) Metal–organic frameworks-derived honeycomb-like Co3O4/three-dimensional graphene networks/Ni foam hybrid as a binder-free electrode for supercapacitors. J Alloy Compd 693:16–24CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  20. 20.
    Wang H, Robinson JT, Diankov G, Dai H (2010) Nanocrystal growth on graphene with various degrees of oxidation. J Am Chem Soc 132:3270–3271CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  21. 21.
    Wu C, Shen Q, Mi R, Deng S, Shu Y, Wang H, Liu J, Yan H (2014) Three-dimensional Co3O4/flocculent graphene hybrid on Ni foam for supercapacitor applications. J Mater Chem A 2:15987–15994CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  22. 22.
    Yuan C, Long Y, Hou L et al. (2012) Flexible hybrid paper made of monolayer Co3O4, microsphere arrays on rGO/CNTs and their application in electrochemical capacitors. Adv Funct Mater 22:2560–2566CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  23. 23.
    Bao W, Yu B, Li W, Fan H, Bai J, Ren Z (2015) Co3O4/nitrogen-doped graphene/carbon nanotubes: An innovative ternary composite with enhanced electrochemical performance. J Alloy Compd 647:873–879CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  24. 24.
    Jiang C, Zhao B, Cheng J, Li J, Zhang H, Tang Z, Yang J (2015) Hydrothermal synthesis of Ni(OH)2, nanoflakes on 3D graphene foam for high-performance supercapacitors. Electrochim Acta 173:399–407CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  25. 25.
    Li Y, Chang S, Liu X, Huang J, Yin J, Wang G, Cao D (2012) Nanostructured CuO directly grown on copper foam and their supercapacitance performance. Electrochim Acta 85:393–398CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  26. 26.
    Yang W, Gao Z, Wang J, Ma J, Zhang M, Liu L (2013) Solvothermal one-step synthesis of Ni-Al layered double hydroxide/carbon nanotube/reduced graphene oxide sheet ternary nanocomposite with ultrahigh capacitance for supercapacitors. Acs Appl Mater Interfaces 5:5443–5454CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  27. 27.
    Li R, Wang Y, Zhou C, Wang C, Ba X, Li Y, Huang X, Liu J (2015) Carbon-stabilized high-capacity ferroferric oxide nanorod array for flexible solid-state alkaline battery-supercapacitor hybrid device with high environmental suitability. Adv Funct Mater 25:5384–5394CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  28. 28.
    Chang H, Kang J, Chen L et al. (2014) Low-temperature solution-processable Ni(OH)2 ultrathin nanosheet/N-graphene nanohybrids for high-performance supercapacitor electrodes. Nanoscale 6:5960–5966CrossRefGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC, part of Springer Nature 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.The State Key Laboratory of Materials-Oriented Chemical Engineering, College of Materials Science and EngineeringNanjing Tech UniversityNanjingChina
  2. 2.Jiangsu National Synergetic Innovation Center for Advanced Materials (SICAM)NanjingChina
  3. 3.Coliaborative Innovation Center of Jiangsu Advanced Bioligical and Chemical Manufacturing (SICAM)NanjingChina

Personalised recommendations