Making anode-grade Carbon is presently both expensive and time-consuming. It is produced through conversion of precursors after decomposition at 1000 degree Celsius.
By using a simple microwave oven the research team in NCL managed to convert sugarcane bagasse/waste into high quality, factory-grade Carbon for use in batteries in a matter of few minutes.
The research team included Prof Satishchandra Ogale, Anil Suryavanshi and Poonam Yadav.The study was published on July 5th in the journal,Electrochimical Acta.
The research team explained the steps they followed in this novel discovery.
The initial carbonization was done overnight by mixing sugarcane bagasse with concentrated sulphuric acid. The acid treatment dissolved most of the inorganic impurities present in bagasse except silica and helped in forming robust carbon double bond backbone structure. The solid product obtained from acid treatment was washed thoroughly and was oven-dried at 70 degree C. Later it was mixed with potassium hydroxide to form slurry. The slurry is then heated in a microwave oven for a few minutes. The heating led to graphitization and high grade carbon for batteries. The whole process is a low-energy utilization process.
Kudos to the team and may this breakthrough result in cost-effective batteries for our people!