Apr 19

Electro-polymerisation of 3,4-ethylenedioxythiophene on reticulated vitreous carbon in imidazolium-based chloroaluminate ionic liquid as energy storage material

research article


  • Electro-polymerisation of porous granular PEDOT films on reticulated vitreous carbon
  • Polymerisation of stable micro/nano-structured PEDOT films by cyclic voltammetry.
  • Doping/de-doping characterisation of the PEDOT films for energy storage.
  • The films achieved 94% coulombic efficiency during doping/de-doping reactions.
  • The films also achieved 45% more capacity than films on two-dimensional electrodes.


This work shows the electro-polymerisation of thin film poly(3,4-ethylenedioxythiophene) on three-dimensional reticulated vitreous carbon substrates by cyclic voltammetry and pulsed polymerisation methods from a Lewis neutral chloroaluminate ionic liquid containing 3,4-ethylenedioxythiophene monomer. The polymer composite is attractive as an energy storage electrode for sustainable and high-performance technologies due to its unique properties of battery and capacitor in one system, i.e., the redox reaction occurring simultaneously with the anion doping/de-doping of the conductive polymer with AlCl4 ionic species contained in the ionic liquid. The structure of the polymer films, their doping/de-doping mechanism and the stability in the ionic liquid were characterised by scanning electron microscopy and cyclic voltammetry and compared with films electro-polymerised on planar vitreous carbon. The typical granular and nano/micro-porous polymer structure observed on planar vitreous carbon was successfully replicated on the macro-porous reticulated vitreous carbon surface. The polymer films show approximately 45% higher capacity than films on planar substrates and similar efficient redox behaviour, proving that the material has hybrid battery-capacitor properties enhanced by the higher area per unit volume of reticulated vitreous carbon.

Graphical abstract

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