Unravelling the origin of the capacitance in nanostructured nitrogen-doped carbon - NiO hybrid electrodes deposited with laser

Pablo García Lebière, Enikö György, Constantin Logofatu, Denys Naumenko, Heinz Amenitsch, Piu Rajak, Regina Ciancio, Ángel Pérez del Pino*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


The full knowledge of the charge storage mechanisms occurring in complex composite electrodes is key for the straightforward development of advanced electrochemical capacitors. In this work, hybrid electrodes composed of reduced graphene oxide, multiwall carbon nanotubes and NiO nanostructures were fabricated through reactive inverse matrix assisted pulsed laser evaporation technique. Nitrogen doping of the carbon nanostructures was carried out by introducing ammonia, urea and melamine precursors in the target. The N-doped graphene electrodes exhibited a significant capacitance enhancement as compared to non-doped ones. This fact is commonly ascribed to faradaic mechanisms. However, our structural-compositional studies point to a significant change of the structural configuration of the composites at the nanoscale upon the nitrogen functionalization as the source of the electrodes’ capacitance enhancement. The composites fabricated with urea precursor exhibited the highest capacitance, and this fact was associated with the presence of pyridinic N groups that triggered the formation of a high amount of structural defects (vacancies – boundaries) and microporosity, not observed in the samples synthesized with other precursors that mainly contained pyrrolic-graphitic N.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)15877-15888
Number of pages12
JournalCeramics International
Issue number11
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jun 2022


  • Carbon nanostructures
  • Electrochemical capacitors
  • Hybrid electrode

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Electronic, Optical and Magnetic Materials
  • Ceramics and Composites
  • Process Chemistry and Technology
  • Surfaces, Coatings and Films
  • Materials Chemistry

Fields of Expertise

  • Advanced Materials Science


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