Propionitrile as a single organic solvent for high voltage electric double-layer capacitors

Hoai Van T. Nguyen, Abdullah Bin Faheem, Kyungwon Kwak, Kyung Koo Lee

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

11 Citations (Scopus)


This study investigates the novel use of propionitrile (PN) as the single organic solvent for high-voltage carbon/carbon capacitors. Quaternary ammonium salts spiro-(1,1ʹ)-bipyrrolidinium tetrafluoroborate (SBPBF4) and 1,1-dimethylpyrrolidinium tetrafluoroborate (DMPBF4) dissolved in acetonitrile (AN) and propionitrile (PN) are compared. PN-based electrolytes exhibit a large and symmetric electrochemical stability, an exceptional anodic potential limit, good ionic conductivity, and low viscosity, allowing EDLCs to operate at 3.5 V even with a high current density (2.5 A g−1). Moreover, PN-based electrolytes can suppress the anodic dissolution of the Al current collector at a high potential. These advantages help in the realization of EDLCs with excellent cycling stabilities at high voltages. As a result, at 3.5 V, EDLCs with PN-based electrolytes exhibit the highest energy and power density of 49.3 Wh kg−1 and 22.9 kW kg−1, respectively. Therefore, the electrolyte systems reported here could be a promising electrolyte candidate to replace currently commercialized electrolytes for practical applications.

Original languageEnglish
Article number228134
JournalJournal of Power Sources
Publication statusPublished - 2020 Jul 1

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
This research was supported by the mid- and long-term nuclear research and development program through the National Research Foundation of Korea ( NRF-2017M2A8A5014710 ) funded by the Korean Ministry of Science and ICT and the National Research Foundation of Korea (NRF) grant funded by the Korea government( MSIT ) ( NRF-2019R1A4A102980111 ).

Publisher Copyright:
© 2020 Elsevier B.V.


  • 1,1-Dimethylpyrrolidinium tetrafluoroborate
  • Cycle stability
  • Electric double-layer capacitor
  • High-voltage
  • Propionitrile

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Renewable Energy, Sustainability and the Environment
  • Energy Engineering and Power Technology
  • Physical and Theoretical Chemistry
  • Electrical and Electronic Engineering


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