Supercapacitors are storage devices that can charge and discharge at a higher speed and with a longer lifetime than conventional batteries, using electrostatics rather than chemical reactions to store energy.

photo of a graphene supercapacitor

Supercapacitors cycle hundreds of thousands of times, but unlike batteries, most of the ones used nowadays cannot store large amounts of energy due to their porous layer electrodes, which dictate the amount of electrostatic charge they can store.

The higher the conductivity and surface area, the higher the energy and power the supercapacitor can store. Since graphene is a two-dimensional material, it has the highest surface area as well as being an electrical conductor. Therefore, it has the potential to significantly increase the storage capacity of supercapacitors.

Thales has been working with using graphene in supercapacitors since the beginning of the Graphene Flagship, and have succeeded in greatly increasing the storage potential and the power of their supercapacitor devices by five times, according to Dr. Paolo Bondavalli from Thales Research and Technology.

They deposited their supercapacitors using spray coating, enabling them to use a variety of substrates, thus allowing them to develop flexible, high power supercapacitors. Thales then collaborated with M-SOLV to scale up their spray coating technique, both of whom are now members of the Graphene Flagship.

For more information, read the article on High volume, high power graphene supercapacitors written by Dr. Siân Fogden, on the Graphene Flagship website.