A report published in the journal Scientific indicates that a team of scientists at
The team headed by Assistant Prof. Carl Pint started by etching optimal supercapacitor nanostructures onto the surface of silicon. Pint’s group then attempted to coat the porous silicon surface with carbon to provide insulation from the electrolyte. “We had no idea what would happen,” said Pint. “Typically, researchers grow graphene from silicon-carbide materials at temperatures in excess of 1400 degrees Celsius. But at lower temperatures – 600 to 700 degrees Celsius – we didn’t expect graphene-like material growth.”
When the porous silicon came out of the furnace they found the structure looked nearly identical to the original material but was coated by a layer of graphene a few nanometers thick. This new technique allows supercapacitors to be incorporated into the design of all sorts of components during the chip fabrication process.