3D-printing creates aerogels for energy storage

April 24, 2015 // By Paul Buckley
3D-printing creates aerogels for energy storage
Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory researchers have developed graphene aerogel microlattices with an engineered architecture by using a 3D printing technique known as direct ink writing. The 3D-printed aerogels will enable better energy storage, sensors, nanoelectronics, catalysis and separations.

The research is reported in the April 22 edition of the journal, Nature Communications.

The 3D printed graphene aerogels have high surface area, excellent electrical conductivity, are lightweight, have mechanical stiffness and exhibit supercompressibility (up to 90 percent compressive strain). In addition, the 3D printed graphene aerogel microlattices show an order of magnitude improvement compared with bulk graphene materials and much better mass transport.

Aerogel is a synthetic porous, ultralight material derived from a gel, in which the liquid component of the gel has been replaced with a gas.

Lawrence Livermore researchers have made graphene aerogel microlattices with an engineered architecture via a 3D printing technique known as direct ink writing. (Photo by Ryan Chen/LLNL)


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