, Volume 25, Issue 10, pp 4637–4650 | Cite as

Kombucha scoby-based carbon as a green scaffold for high-capacity cathode in lithium–sulfur batteries

  • Krishnaveni Kalaiappan
  • Sivakumar MarimuthuEmail author
  • Subadevi Rengapillai
  • Raja Murugan
  • Premkumar T.
Original Paper


A ternary composite cathode of sulfur, poly(acrylonitrile) (PAN), and carbon was investigated for the possible use in Li–S batteries. The carbon used in this work was obtained from kombucha tea or tea fungus with potassium hydroxide activation process. The flaky structure of functionalized carbon derived from a waste part of kombucha culture has micropores and mesopores with a large pore volume, which are favorable for impregnating elemental sulfur. The ration of the ternary composite was based on a simple process involving a dispersion of the carbon with that of S/PAN, followed by a simple heat treatment. The cathode delivered an initial discharge capacity of 1666 mAh g−1 at C/10 rate and a 100th cycle capacity of 838 mAh g−1. This study exploits the cumulative contribution of a conductive carbon and PAN in the improved performance of the cathode.

Graphical abstract


Sulfur cathode Composite cathode Kombucha scoby Lithium–sulfur battery 


Funding information

This study was financially supported by BSR of University Grants Commission (UGC), New Delhi, India, and Ministry of Human Resource Development RUSA-Phase 2.0 grant sanctioned vide Lt.No.F-24-51/2014 U Policy (TNMulti Gen), Dept. of Education, Government of India.

Compliance with ethical standards

Conflict of interest

The authors declare that they have no conflict of interest.

Supplementary material

11581_2019_3018_MOESM1_ESM.doc (134 kb)
Figure S1 CV curve for S/PAN composite cathode. Fig. S2 Rate capability of S/PAN, S/KC and S/PAN/KC composite (DOC 133 kb)


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag GmbH Germany, part of Springer Nature 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  • Krishnaveni Kalaiappan
    • 1
  • Sivakumar Marimuthu
    • 1
    Email author
  • Subadevi Rengapillai
    • 1
  • Raja Murugan
    • 2
  • Premkumar T.
    • 2
  1. 1.#120, Energy Materials Lab, Department of Physics, Science BlockAlagappa UniversityKaraikudiIndia
  2. 2.Electrochemical Power Systems DivisionCSIR-Central Electrochemical Research InstituteKaraikudiIndia

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