Publication Date

Summer 2017

Advisor(s) - Committee Chair

Sanju Gupta (Director), Michael Carini, and Ivan Novikov

Degree Program

Department of Physics and Astronomy

Degree Type

Master of Science


Technological progress is determined to a great extent by developments of novel materials from new combinations of known substances with different dimensionality and functionality. We investigate the development of 3D ‘hybrid’ nanomaterials by utilizing graphene based systems coupled with transition metal oxides (e.g. manganese oxides MnO2 and Mn3O4). This lays the groundwork for high performance electrochemical electrodes for alternative energy owing to their higher specific capacitance, wide operational window and stability through charge-discharge cycling, environmental benignity, cost effective, easily processed, and reproducible in a larger scale.

Thus far, very few people have investigated the potential of combining carbon sheets that can function as a supercapacitor in certain systems with transition metals that have faradaic properties to create electrochemical capacitors. Previous work by Wang et al. has focused on the structural combination of Mn3O4 and graphene based materials,1 and research by Jafta et al. studied the electrochemical properties of MnO2 with GO.2

We find that both physical and chemical attachment of manganese oxide on graphene allows for electrical interplay of the materials as indicated in electrochemical analysis and Raman spectroscopy. Attachment of the two materials is also characterized by scanning electron microscopy and X-ray diffraction.


Chemistry | Physics