Wearable electronic devices have received extensive attention in recent years due to their high portability and integrated intelligence. To make the devices work stably when attached or worn on our bodies, it is of great importance to design flexible and wearable energy-storage devices.
Prof. Guozhen Shen’s group from the Institution of Semiconductors, Chinese Academy of Science, China (http://www.escience.cn/people/gzshen), has designed and fabricated metres-long flexible wire-shaped supercapacitors, which can be easily woven into wearable and patterned textiles, making it possible to integrated them into our clothes as power sources for portable electronic devices, for example, MP3 players, LED flashlights, watchbands, or belts. In their study, CoNiO2 nanowires were grown directly on carbon fibres (CFs) as the cathode, and active carbon on CFs as the anode. The anode and the cathode were spirally twisted together around an organic polymer backbone like the DNA-Helix structure. This unique structure provides good flexibility, toughness, weavability, and skin-affinity to the device. The device shows no obvious performance degradation when suffering charge-discharge cycling, bending, pulling, and tying. After weaving as a Chinese knot, watchband, belt, and clothes textiles, the wire-supercapacitors work well as the wearable energy-storage units to power the personal electronics, making it possible to synthesize promising hybrid supercapacitor electrodes for future portable and wearable electronic applications.
The work has recently been published in our brand new flagship journal for all technology-related materials application research – Advanced Materials Technologies