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Low-Temperature Molten Salt Electrochemical CO2 Upcycling for Advanced Energy Materials

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Journal Name
ACS Applied Materials & Interfaces
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One strategy for addressing the climate crisis caused by CO2 emissions is to efficiently convert CO2 to advanced materials suited for green and clean energy technology applications. Porous carbon is widely used as an advanced energy storage material because of its enhanced energy storage capabilities as an anode. Herein, we report electrochemical CO2 upcycling to solid carbon with a controlled microstructure and porosity in a ternary molten carbonate melt at 450 °C. Controlling the electrochemical parameters (voltage, temperature, cathode material) enabled the conversion of CO2 to porous carbon with a tunable morphology and porosity for the first time at such a low temperature. Additionally, a well-controlled morphology and porosity are beneficial for reversible energy storage. In fact, these carbon materials delivered high specific capacity, stable cycling performances, and exceptional rate capability even under extremely fast charging conditions when integrated as an anode in lithium-ion batteries (LIBs). The present approach not only demonstrated efficient upcycling of CO2 into porous carbon suitable for enhanced energy storage but can also contribute to a clean and green energy technology that can reduce carbon emissions to achieve sustainable energy goals.